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Unemployment and Divorce

Posted on in Divorce

Unemployment Effect on Divorce RateThere are many factors that contribute to divorce, and more and more studies are being released as of late that point to non-traditional reasons for marital dissolution. One such study, as reported by the Huffington Post, examines martial satisfaction and employment status. "The examination found that when men are not employed, it heightens the possibility of either the man or woman leaving the marriage." The study did not report similar findings if it was the wife that was unemployed or laid off instead of the husband. With effects of the Great Recession still rippling through American society, this study would indicate that many marriages have come to an end because of unemployment or job loss.

The unemployment rate, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is dramatically higher today than it was a decade ago. In January 2003, for example, the unemployment rate was 5.8, a typical number for months that year. In 2013, on the other hand, the unemployment rate was 7.9. This was down from the height of the Great Recession, when the January 2010 unemployment rate clocked in at 9.8, nearly a ten-year high (the unemployment rate was the highest its been this decade in March and April of 2010, at 9.9 percent). According to the Census Bureau, however, the divorce rate actually declined from 1990 to 2009; from 4.7 per 1,000 people to 3.4. This was the most recent year for which this data was available.

Whether or not this data matches the study, researchers at the Ohio State University, led by Liana Sayer, found conclusively that employment status DID affect divorce rates. It may not, however, be directly dependent on employment status, but the effects of unemployment. "If marital dissatisfaction is great," reports the Huffington Post, "the loss of a job is just another reason to end the relationship." There are also emotional or societal effects of unemployment and divorce, such as "heightened negative emotions [and] broken societal expectations."

If you or someone you know is considering divorce and suspect it may be resultant from your spouse's unemployment, do not go through it alone. Contact an experienced Austin family law attorney today.

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