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Most children born to married couples

A slim majority of children in England and Wales are still born to married couples or to parents in civil partnerships, the latest statistics reveal.

Last year, 53 per cent of births occurred within marriages or civil partnerships, a relatively modest but still noticeable decline from the 58 per cent a decade ago in 2004. Fifty years ago, in 1964, the figure stood at a decisive 93 per cent.

Meanwhile, the percentage of births occurring outside marriage or civil partnerships spiked sharply in favour of younger women when broken down by age. The vast majority (96 per cent) of women under the age of 20 who gave birth last year were not in a formal relationship, while most of those in their 30s who bore children were. For women aged 30 to 34, the number was 67 per cent, rising to 68 per cent for those aged 35 to 39: the highest percentage of all age groups.

Across all age groups, the percentage of children born to parents who are not married or in a civil partnership has increased noticeably over the last ten years.

Read Births by Parents’ Characteristics in England and Wales, 2014 here.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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  1. Dr Grumpy says:

    An unfortunate choice of words “still born” has certain connotations perhaps “the majority of child are born to married couples” would have been better?

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