On average, people going through a divorce pay upwards of $5,000 in fees to their attorneys. Most lawyers – according to statistics – begin working on the divorce for a $1,000 or $1,500 retainer, but frequent consultations, court filings, mediations and phone calls at a cost of around $150 an hour can add up fast. In a poor economy, it makes sense to stay in a bad marriage than to pay the steep cost of ending the relationship. In fact, divorce rates are currently at their lowest since 1970.
Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that divorce rates have dropped almost six percent since the economic downturn. These statistics may cause speculation that there is a correlation between a bad economy and a decrease in divorce. But there is not enough research to say that is necessarily true.
When times are tough, do people once in love find a way to summon those feelings again? Or could it be that as one person loses their job, they become financially dependent on their spouse and less likely to move out on their own? Whatever the connection may be between divorce and the economy, statistics show that divorce rates and the economy growth decrease simultaneously.
Other studies show that people are changing their views of infidelity. Today, more people think that infidelity is wrong than they did in 1970 and are being more faithful to their spouse. One might say this is the cause of dropping divorce rates, not the economy. People today hold marriage in higher regard than in 1970 since cheating is not as accepted as it once was.
Regardless of the cause, marriages have been lasting longer and fewer people have been divorcing over the past 40 years. Is it due to financial instability, lost jobs and foreclosed homes? Maybe unhappy spouses cannot come up with $1,500 for a retainer. Perhaps married people find themselves dependent on their spouse’s family for financial and emotional support. Alternatively, maybe people generally band together in tough times and try to rebuild what they once had.
While it might be ideal for lawyers, divorce rates are falling and people are staying married. If you think about it, cohabitating is less expensive and more convenient for people, especially when children are involved. There is one house payment, utility bill, and family cell phone plan. Additionally, there is one meal to cook, house to clean, and refrigerator to stock. Both people claim the children on their taxes and share parenting responsibilities.
Maybe a poor economy is good for the American family in a way. If people work on their marriages, strengthen family bonds and support one another because of an economic downfall, it is not so bad. After all, money isn’t everything.
Considering Divorce? Tell Us About Your Case
If your marriage simply isn’t working – regardless of the state of the economy – there are alternatives. The San Diego divorce attorneys at The Edmunds Law Firm are dedicated to assisting you during a very emotional time. Just give us a call at (760) 634-7630 or sign up for a free consultation on our website and one of our team members will contact you shortly.