Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznare
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Second Marriages More Successful?

From the Marriage Foundation:

Second Marriages: Triumph of decision over hope?  It is often assumed that second marriages are riskier than first marriages - “The triumph of hope over experience” as popularised by Samuel Johnson in 1791. A new analysis of data commissioned from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) challenges this assumption. In fact, second marriages overall do consistently better than first marriages. Where one or both spouses are marrying for the second time, couples marrying today face an estimated 31% risk of divorce during their lifetime, compared to an estimated 45% risk of divorce amongst couples where both spouses are marrying for the first time.

Read more here.


May 1, 2013 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 12, 2013

Divorce Causes

From the Huffington Post:

A growing number of Brits are citing alcohol as a contributing factor in their divorces -- and it's the wives who have the drinking problem in the majority of the cases, according to one divorce attorney.

Read more here.


April 12, 2013 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Dual Citizenship & Divorce

Forbes contributor Jeff Landers discusses the complex problems individuals face in divorces involving dual citizenship.  More importantly, these divorces can become extremely complicated and messy if children are involved, especially if the two divorcing individuals can't agree on a single country to reside.  Landers answers questions relating to divorce and dual citizenship.

Read more here.


February 13, 2013 in Current Affairs, Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Basic Divorce Overview

From the State Bar of Wisconisn:

July 5, 2012 – Although Wisconsin has consistently stayed below the national divorce rate, 16,635 couples were divorced last year. One in every 1.8 marriages ends in divorce.

So it was not surprising that a healthy number of young lawyers turned out for a recent CLE seminar, “Handling a Basic Divorce,” which revealed that divorces aren’t so basic.

However, several seasoned family law practitioners presented a wealth of information that lawyers can use to start or build a divorce law practice, including practical advice. This article highlights some of the major issues, including practical tips, to handle a basic divorce.

Read more here.


August 15, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, June 29, 2012

Adultery & Divorce

From Reuters:

A spouse's adultery, once discovered, can lead to arguments, resentment, and even divorce. But do courts look less favorably upon an adulterer in a divorce case?

Generally, no -- thanks to the concept of "no-fault" divorce, now available in all 50 states. In a "no-fault" divorce, either spouse can seek a divorce for any reason, and it doesn't matter who's at fault.

But some states still allow the option to pursue a "fault" divorce, in which adultery may play a role.

Read more here.


June 29, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

More Female Payors of Alimony

From the Chicago Tribube:

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Tables have turned in U.S. divorce courts with more women paying their former husbands alimony and child support than ever before, according to U.S. lawyers.

As women climb higher up the career ladder and outpace their exes in salary, when love goes wrong and marriages break up they are being compelled to contribute to the livelihood of their former spouses.

And some are not happy about it.

More than half, 56 percent, of divorce lawyers across the United States have seen an increase in mothers paying child support in the last three years and 47 percent have noted a hike in the number of women paying alimony, according to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

Read more here.


June 21, 2012 in Current Affairs, Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Ryznar & Stępień-Sporek: "The Harmonization of Matrimonial Property Regimes"

Margaret Ryznar (Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law) and Anna Stępień-Sporek (University of Gdańsk School of Law) have posted The Harmonization of Matrimonial Property Regimes on SSRN.  Here is the abstract:

Although family law often differs by jurisdiction, harmonization efforts would make such state laws uniform. In the United States, the major obstacle to the harmonization of family law is the federal system. In the European Union, on the other hand, efforts to harmonize the family laws of member states are increasingly successful. This significant experiment in harmonization offers lessons into the roles of jurisdictional autonomy, cultural relativism, and legal absolutes in society, all of growing importance in an increasingly mobile society and in light of the European Union Commission’s pending proposal for harmonization of matrimonial property regimes.



June 17, 2012 in Divorce (grounds), Marriage (impediments), Property Division, Scholarship, Family Law | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, May 31, 2012

NY Divorce Laws

From the Wall Street Journal:

A state commission tasked with reviewing a contentious aspect of New York's divorce reform laws is four months behind in delivering an expected report, raising concerns that lawmakers will have little time to address recommendations before their session ends in June.

The independent Law Revision Commission now expects to submit its report May 31. Though the commission's suggestions aren't binding, several legislators have said they are waiting for the report before proposing amendments.

The law was one of a package of 2010 reforms that made New York the last state in the country to adopt no-fault divorce. It set a strict formula for awarding temporary alimony, the money one spouse gives the other during the divorce process.

Since its passage, the statute has come under criticism from many lawyers in the state, who say that the formula may work well for lower-income spouses with few assets but frequently produces lopsided awards for wealthier couples with more complex financial situations.

Read more here.


May 31, 2012 in Current Affairs, Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Separation & Divorce Statistics

From USA Today:

SAN FRANCISCO — About 79% of married couples who separate end up getting divorced, suggest new estimates of the incidence and length of separations.

"Separation is very common and is more common than immediate divorce," said researcher Dmitry Tumin of Ohio State University at a presentation at the annual meeting of the Population Association of America, which ended Sunday. "Most separations last one year or less, but a few drag on a decade or more before ending in divorce. Other separations stay unresolved."

"The decision to separate is driven by time spent in the first marriage, and for women, by the presence of young children," Tumin said. He co-authored the research with sociologist Zhenchao Qian, also of Ohio State.

Read more here.


May 23, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Happy Newlyweds Ultimately Unhappy Divorcees

From the Huffington Post:

In recent years, there have been several studies that suggest that some happy and satisfied newlyweds were still getting divorced. Paul Amato and Bryndl Hohmann-Marriott's 2007 research is one such example; they found that there was a surprising number low-distress couples that were splitting up.

Read more here.


March 22, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Religious Divorce

From the NYT:

CHICAGO — Before a packed house of 350 men and women at a Jewish educational center, Beverly Siegel suggested three questions that religious Jewish women should ask before divorcing: “Do I get a get? Do I not get a get? Hmm, what kind of get should I get?”

Ms. Siegel, a Chicago filmmaker, was screening her 2011 documentary, “Women Unchained,” about Jewish women whose husbands refuse to give a religious divorce known as a get. Less religious Jews divorce with no thought to the get. But in traditional Judaism, the husband may withhold the divorce. The women are considered agunot, or “chained wives.” A recent survey found that between 2005 and 2010, there were 462 cases of agunot in North America.

Even if she has obtained a civil divorce, a chained wife, or agunah, cannot remarry within the faith. If she does, children from her new marriage carry a stigma forever. In exchange for a get, husbands often demand reduced alimony, favorable child-custody arrangements, even cash payouts.

Read more here.


March 20, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Couples in Turkey Divorce to Receive Parents' Pensions

News from Turkey in the World Bulletin:

The Social Security Institution (SGK) has received more than 6,000 tip-offs over the past 15 months that couples divorce on a consensual basis in order to receive a deceased parent's pension, according to an SGK report.


SGK inspectors have established that a great majority of tip-offs proved to be accurate in their claims and that numerous couples indeed continue to live together despite being divorced. The couples do so in order to receive the pensions of a deceased parent as unmarried women by law receive a parent's pension.

Read more here.


March 13, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Prison Release in Exchange for Divorce


Israel's supreme rabbinical court of appeals upheld a ruling to keep a man imprisoned until he grants his wife a bill of divorce.

Meir Gorodetzki was sent to prison by the court for refusing to give his wife a divorce, or "get," in 2001, The Jerusalem Post reported Monday.

The maximum sentence for the offense is 10 years imprisonment.

Read more here.

February 11, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, February 3, 2012

Alimony in the Case of Two Husbands, but Not Bigamy


NEW YORK, Jan. 16 (UPI) -- A New York woman who wound up with two husbands at the same time can keep the support payments from her first husband, court records show.

A recent court decision said husband No. 1, Daniel Silber, can stop paying $60,000 in annual support, but Eda Silber, 37, of Long Island can keep the $300,000 she's already been paid, the New York Post reported Monday.

And even though Eda Silber married husband No. 2, George Frenkel, before her divorce from Daniel Silber became final, she's not a bigamist under law because there was no state marriage license involved in her second wedding, the court said.

Read more here.

February 3, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

CO Divorce Waiting Period Proposed

From the

A state lawmaker who wants to make it more difficult for parents to divorce said he initially had no idea that legislators a decade ago killed a similar proposal dubbed the "Dr. Laura" bill.

Sen. Kevin Lundberg, R-Berthoud, said he believes his proposal stands a better chance because it makes exceptions, such as in cases of domestic violence or sexual abuse.

The bill would require parents who have minor children and are considering divorce to first undergo educational instruction "that tells them how this impacts their children," he said. Then there would be a waiting period before filing for divorce.

"We have made it just too easy to bail out of a marriage," Lundberg said.

Read more here.



January 17, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, January 16, 2012

In Malaysian News...

From the StarOnline:

A TRAINING manager in Kuala Lumpur was fined RM500 by the Syariah Court for divorcing his wife inside a car on his birthday three years ago, reported Harian Metro.

Hasbullah Hashim, 53, was charged under Section 124 of the Islamic Family Law Act for divorcing outside the court without permission.

Read more here.


January 16, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

British "HP Divorces"

From the UK Financial Times:
People have long spread the pain of buying fridges, televisions and cars by paying in instalments. Now, many are bringing the same principle to the cost of divorce.

The number of cases ending in staggered payments rather than one-off settlements has risen by 50 per cent since 2008, when the financial crisis first began biting, according to Pannone, a Manchester-based law firm.

The practice has been dubbed “HP divorce” after the hire purchase agreements typically used to buy expensive consumer goods. Increased economic turbulence, job insecurity and the drying up of credit has fuelled growth in the phenomenon.

Read more here.


January 10, 2012 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Divorce in China

From the Telegraph:

There is no doubt that marriage is in crisis in China.

Once a dirty word, divorce is now so commonplace that in the first half of 2011 almost one million marriages ended, a jump of 17.2 per cent on last year according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs.

Amongst Mrs Yang's generation, the 18-30 age group, and in the major cities, around one-third of all marriages fail. But it is not just the young and the metropolitan middle classes who are walking away from wedded bliss. In the first quarter of 2011, the biggest rise in divorces was in the southwestern province of Sichuan and eastern Shandong Province.

Read more here.


December 2, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Anatomy of First Divorce Cases in Malta

From Times of Malta:

Eleven people filed for divorce yesterday, the first day the Family Court opened its doors to accept applications since the law came into force on Saturday.

Nine of the applicants were already legally separated while the other two were in the process of separating and requested that the proceedings be converted into a divorce case, a Family Court spokesman said.

The 11 cases were filed by the same four lawyers between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. The first case submitted yesterday came with teething problems as a lawyer forgot to submit relevant information and had to resubmit the application again later on in the day.

Read more here.


October 4, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Divorce in the South


While the Bible Belt is known for its devotion to traditional values, Southerners don't do so well on one key family value: They are more likely to get divorced than people living in the Northeast.

Southern men and women had higher rates of divorce in 2009 than their counterparts in other parts of the country: 10.2 per 1,000 for men and 11.1 per 1,000 for women, according to a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau released Thursday.

By comparison, men and women in the Northeast had the lowest rates of divorce, 7.2 and 7.5 per 1,000, which is also lower than the national divorce rate of 9.2 for men and 9.7 for women.


Values about premarital sex associated with the Bible Belt and rural America may be encouraging people to marry early, at ages when they are likely to have less education and less income to support a long-lasting marriage, according to Naomi Cahn, law professor at The George Washington University Law School and co-author of "Red Families v. Blue Families: Legal Polarization and the Creation of Culture."

"There's a moral crisis in red states that's produced by higher divorce rates and the disparity between parental values and behavior of young adults," said Cahn. "There is enormous tension between moral values and actual practices."

Read more here.


August 25, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)