Each year in January several column inches are devoted to Divorce Day – the first working Monday in January when there is reportedly a spike in people applying to divorce.
This year there is a concerted effort by many people in the legal industry to bust the myth about divorce-day. So, is divorce-day fact or fiction?
The facts: More people search for divorce in January than at any other time of the year. Over 40,500 people in the UK are expected to search online for divorce throughout January with much of this falling in the first week of January (source Google). This is nearly 25% higher than the usual traffic. Last year (2018) amicable saw a notable uplift in January. Clearly, it’s no myth that there is a spike in people applying for divorces in the first working days of January. If you’re still in any doubt, just try calling the court helpline today and see what queue position you’re in today.
The fiction: It's disingenuous to suggest that people decide to divorce in the same way they decide other New Year Resolutions. It’s our experience that they don’t. The decision to divorce isn’t taken lightly and people don’t do it just because they’ve seen some press about it at the turn of the year.
The reason for the spike has many origins. Often people with children may have decided to divorce earlier in the year but have made an effort to spend Christmas together as normal for their children. This means the numbers of people divorcing fall in December and spill over into the first week in January when the children go back to school. The same spike appears after the summer holidays in September.
It's also true that people see the new year as a time when things get done and changes are made, so whilst they may have decided the relationship was over months ago… the new year brings with it a time of volition and determination to make the change. Deciding to divorce is difficult – it’s no surprise then that people need extra motivation to take that first step.
Whilst the debate ‘rages’ on about ‘Divorce-Day’, January provides a window of opportunity to highlight the many and varied brilliant services that amicable and others like us, such Resolution, offer couples who want to divorce amicably and in a better way. There’s usually little interest in good news stories but ‘Divorce-Day’ provides a platform for promoting divorce without conflict and the campaign to secure a change in the law and #NoFaultDivorce. Both these initiatives will make finalising the ending of a relationship less stressful and allow people to focus on their children if they have them, and their mental health. A dignified divorce process is the mark of a civilised society and we should be using every available opportunity to further that cause.
If you would like to find out more about divorcing amicably please contact us on 020 3004 4695.
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