Centerville, OH- Divorce attorneys often refer to January as divorce month and the first Monday of a new year as divorce Monday. That’s because statistically speaking divorce filings spike in January, sometimes increasing by one-third throughout the month and remain high for the next two months.
So why is that? Why do more couples file for divorce in January than any other month? Is it those New Year’s resolutions? Is it more practical to file in January?
Well, for one, it’s a family thing which makes sense. No matter how discontent a person may feel in their marriage, the holidays just don’t feel like the right time to turn your or your child’s life upside down. An unhappy spouse may be thinking about divorce and doing their research during the holidays so they can be ready to file when January hits.
James McLaren, president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, told the Wall Street Journal’s Quentin Fotrell that many people wait until the January to file because they know between Thanksgiving and New Year’s there is little court time available. Couples want to avoid the awkwardness of being in the middle of divorce over the holidays. A couple will be fighting for court time are likely to have their court dates delayed anyway, so why not wait?
And, yes, New Year’s resolutions actually lead to more divorce filings. We make a promise to improve our lives, and sometimes that means leaving an unhappy marriage behind. They’ve had a final holiday together as a family unit, but with the New Year, an estranged spouse wants to move on and have their divorce settled.
On a more practical level, divorcing earlier in the year will affect your personal finances and taxes differently. In the U.S., December 31st marks the end of the tax year, and by waiting to divorce until after that date a couple can file joint taxes and still enjoy the tax breaks allowed to married couples.
After the initial rush in January, divorce filings begin to drop off in March and remain stable until August. This is primarily due to the school year; parents don’t like to relocate their children to a new school in the middle of a school year. Before uprooting their children, parents prefer their children finish the school year and give them the summer to adjust to their parent’s divorce and a new school district.
No time is an easy time to file for divorce, it’s always hard on every party involved. Whenever you decide to file for divorce, just know that the filing the petition is just the first stage. A couple faces many issues when they divorce, and need the expert advice of an Ohio divorce attorney. A couple needs someone who can outline the steps you have to follow and the decisions you and your spouse must make. Your divorce attorney will explain how the state of Ohio divides assets and determines child custody and will ensure you get a settlement you are happy with.