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Women seek more divorces

Women are still more likely to seek a divorce regardless of their sexual orientation, new data from the Office for National Statistics reveal.

Among heterosexual couples, wives were responsible for 65,290 divorce applications in 2016. This accounts for 61 per cent of the 106,959 total for the year. Women also dominated the number of same sex couples bringing their marriage to an end in 2016, with female couples making up a staggering 78 per cent of such divorces that year.

These figures confirm the continuing long-term trend of women wanting divorce more than men. The last time more husbands sought them more than wives was back in 1944.

Overall, the divorce rate increased for both heterosexual and same sex couples in 2016, with a nearly six per cent increase among straight marriages. Meanwhile, same sex divorces rose from just 22 in 2015 to 112 last year.

Stowe Family Law Partner Joanna Kay said:

“The ONS trends fit in with our experience: most petitioners for divorce are women, the number of divorces has increased and we have seen an increase in same sex divorces.

The increase in same sex divorces is unsurprising given that this is the second year it has been possible for those couples to divorce.

Economic doom and gloom was forecast in 2016 but, despite Brexit, growth and consumer spending held up better than expected in the second half of the year. This may have contributed to people feeling confident enough to divorce.”

Stowe Family Law is the UK’s largest specialist family law firm, with offices in North and West Yorkshire, London, Greater Manchester, Cheshire, Hertfordshire, Hampshire and Surrey.

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