Divorcing Down Under
The news from Down Under concerning the state of divorce in Australia seems to mirror that of the United States when it comes to increasing money worries in a tight economy leading to a rise in the number of total divorces in that country. As reported recently in The Sydney Morning Herald the number of divorces in Australia increased 5% from 2008 to 2009. The figure of 49,448 divorces in 2009 represents 2.3 divorces per 1000 people and is the first increase in the number and rate of divorces in Australia since 2001.
Speculation that the increase in divorces is related to the worsening economy is supported by surveys conducted by the non-profit group Relationships Australia that show the top three factors affecting relationships are money, work and kids. The statistics also showed that the incidence of financial stress cited as a key factor in relationship difficulties in 2008 had doubled since the previous survey conducted in 2006.
If comparisons to divorce in the United States prove to be valid, Australians can expect the total number of divorces to continue rising in that country for the next year or two as U.S. statistics have shown there is often a gap between the time relationship problems first surface and the point when couples actually decide to file for a divorce. In that light, even if the worldwide economy does start to improve, the situation for divorce Down Under will probably get a bit worse before it begins to get better.