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Divorce is Down During COVID

The Institute for Family Studies
·1-min read

New Research Brief by the Institute for Family Studies

Year-Over-Year Change in Divorce Filings
Year-Over-Year Change in Divorce Filings
Year-Over-Year Change in Divorce Filings

Charlottesville, VA, Oct. 21, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Divorce Is Down During COVID

Date: October 21, 2020

(Charlottesville, VA)— Despite media reports that divorce is surging during the pandemic and marriages are in trouble, research by the Institute for Family Studies (IFS) shows there is some good news about marriage and family life. In a new brief, IFS senior fellow W. Bradford Wilcox and IFS research fellow Lyman Stone highlight two positive trends for U.S. marriages:

1. Reports of marital stability are up. According to the new American Family Survey, the share of married people reporting that their marriage is in trouble fell from 40% in 2019 to 29% in 2020.

2. State divorce trends appear to be down in 2020. In the states where we have year-to-date data, there's been a marked decline in divorce during the COVID months. For example, divorce is down 19% in Florida, 9% in Missouri, 12% in Oregon, and 13% in Rhode Island. Only in Arizona has divorce increased, and that increase began in 2019.

"Although some couples are clearly struggling and may land in divorce court this year," said Wilcox, "most couples report stronger commitment as they emerge from the COVID crucible stronger together."

Download the brief here. For interview requests, please contact Michael Toscano.


CONTACT: Michael Toscano Institute for Family Studies 5162426812