Family Law Prof Blog

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

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)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Divorce Expressway

From wbtv:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) -- Could your commute be bad for your marriage? According to a new study from Umea University,  long distance commuters could be traveling a highway to divorce.

The study found long-distance commuting increases the risk of divorce by 40-percent. It also found most long-distance commuters are men, and when the husband commutes, the wife often takes lower-paying or part-time jobs closer to home and takes on a larger share of the household responsibility.

Women who commute long distances feel more stress, time pressure and less successful at work. Not surprisingly, the study found income and careers benefit from commuting, but the social costs should be considered.

Read more here.



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

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

NY Divorces Up 12% Since No-Fault Introduced

From the Business Review:

Attorneys have seen early signs of the impact of “no-fault” divorce. Last fall, New York became the last state to approve that avenue for ending a marriage.


Divorce filings rose 12 percent in the first seven full months the laws were in effect, compared with the same time period before, according to state court data.

Read more here.




July 26, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Gay Divorces in NYC

From the New York Post:

Wedding planners aren't the only ones riding the gay-marriage gravy train.

Lawyers, too, are expecting a bonanza -- from gay divorce.


"The same issues present themselves with same-sex couples: How do we split assets? What do we do with the children?" Clement said. "The law doesn't change merely because you have same-sex partners."

Mere months after Massachusetts passed its same-sex marriage bill in 2004, gay couples began filing for divorce -- sometimes having to use outdated forms that still listed "husband" and "wife."

Read more here.


July 5, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Unmarried but Divorced


If one person in a relationship believes the couple is married and the other says they're not, what does the law say?

A Maplewood woman divorcing her husband of 18 years argued she should be treated as a spouse because she had a "good-faith belief" that they were legally married.

Initially wed in the Hmong tradition, Su Xiong and Choa Yang Xiong described themselves as husband and wife, obtained a marriage license and filed taxes and bought houses and insurance together as a married couple.

They did not, however, get a marriage certificate. The husband, Su Xiong, argued in court that this meant they were not legally married.

But the state Court of Appeals agreed with a Ramsey County district judge this week that the woman was a "putative spouse" under Minnesota law, with all the benefits that implies.

Read more here.



June 27, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Divorce in Philippines

From PhilStar:

MANILA, Philippines (Xinhua) - Congress began this week a heated debate on the issue of legalizing divorce, but many social scientists believe it hard to achieve in this majority Catholic country at present.

The Philippines and the Vatican are now the only places in the world to ban divorce, after Malta voted to remove its ban on divorce on May 31.

The Philippine House committee on revision of laws kicked off its deliberations on the controversial divorce bill, with pro- and anti-divorce lawmakers facing off on the issue of legalizing divorce in the country.

One of the authors of the bill, women's party list group Gabriela believes that the existing laws on marriage are not enough, and legalization of divorce will help many couples and families suffering from failed marriages.

Read more here.



June 14, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, June 13, 2011

Malta Legalizes Divorce

From ABC News:

A weekend referendum in the Mediterranean island of Malta found majority support for the introduction of divorce laws.

But it was a tight win for the pro-divorce movement, with just over 53 per cent voting in favour of the referendum.

The result was Malta's prime minister, Lawrence Gonzi, who had campaigned heavily against the introduction of divorce.

"The majority result in favour of divorce is not the result that I'd hoped for," he said.

"But the will of the people has to be respected and parliament should enact a law for the introduction of divorce."

The referendum asked whether divorce should be legalised "in the case of a married couple who has been separated or has been living apart for at least four years and where there is no reasonable hope for reconciliation between the spouses, whilst at the same time ensuring that adequate maintenance is guaranteed and the welfare of the children is safeguarded".

Read more here.



June 13, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, June 10, 2011

Video Games Causing Divorces

From Deseret News:

Last year, Divorce Online reported that men paying more attention to their video games than their spouse was the cause of 5 percent of divorces. The number jumped up to 15 percent this year.

Read more here.


June 10, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Targets of Celebrity Divorce Battles

Forbes recently ran an article about the things at the center of celebrity divorce battles.  Read it here.


May 12, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 22, 2011

Divorce & Taxes

Time recently ran 5 things you need to know about divorce and taxes.  Read it here.


April 22, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Divorce for a Price

From Bloomberg Businessweek:

Divorce can be expensive, but in Romania you'd better hope you're not living in the town of Sangeorgiu de Mures when you decide to untie the knot.

Several months ago, a new law went into effect in Romania allowing some couples to be divorced by town hall officials. Each municipality can set the fee, and huge discrepancies have emerged.

Read more here.


April 20, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Higher Divorce Rate for Military Women

From the AP:

For women in the military, there's a cold, hard reality: Their marriages are more than twice as likely to end in divorce as those of their male comrades — and up to three times as likely for enlisted women. And military women get divorced at higher rates than their peers outside the military, while military men divorce at lower rates than their civilian peers.

About 220,000 women have served in Afghanistan and Iraq in roles ranging from helicopter pilots to police officers. Last year, 7.8 percent of women in the military got a divorce, compared with 3 percent of military men, according to Pentagon statistics. Among the military's enlisted corps, nearly 9 percent of women saw their marriages end, compared with a little more than 3 percent of the men.

Like all divorces, the results can be a sense of loss and a financial blow. But for military women, a divorce can be a breaking point — even putting them at greater risk for homelessness down the road.

It has an effect, too, on military kids. The military has more single moms than dads, and an estimated 30,000 of them have deployed in support of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Why military women are more burdened by divorce is unclear, although societal pressure is likely a factor.

"It's a strange situation, where there's a fair amount of equality in terms of their military roles, but as the military increasingly treats women the same as it treats men in terms of their work expectations, however, society still expects them to fulfill their family roles. And that's not equally balanced between men and women," said David Segal, director of the Center for Research on Military Organization at the University of Maryland.

One speculation is that while more traditional men join the military, women who are attracted to military life are less conventional — and perhaps less willing to stay in a bad marriage.

About half of all married women in the military are married to a fellow service member, compared with less than 10 percent of military men. While it can be an advantage to be married to someone who understands military life, balancing two military careers poses challenges.

Read more here.


March 10, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Montana Counseling Measure Fails

A Republican lawmaker wants to require couples with children under the age of 18 to undergo marriage counseling before getting a divorce.

Representative Tom McGillvray's bill would require couples to attend seven meetings with a counselor. He says divorce is ruining young children's lives and he wants parents to think twice before getting a divorce.

"I don't want you telling me what I can and can't do in my married life. I'm sure not going to tell anyone what they can and can't do in their married life. Last time I heard, we lived in a free country, people can make their own decisions," countered Rep. Edie McClafferty (D-Butte)

The bill died on the House floor in a 60-40 vote.

Read more here.


February 24, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Fight Styles Most Likely Leading to Divorce


It's reasonable to assume that couples who scream and throw things at each other are the most likely to eventually divorce.

However, a study recently published by the University of Michigan reports that this is not necessarily the case. They studied 373 couples over a span of 16 years, beginning with the first year of marriage to see if they could determine risks of divorce based on fighting styles.

Toxic fighting styles

Contrary to popular belief, explosive fighting styles were not determined to be the most toxic style, according to this study. The most dangerous pattern is when one partner tries to calmly and objectively analyze a situation and the other partner withdraws.

When one partner tries to relate and sympathize with the other's point of view and that other partner withdraws, it is seen as a lack of interest in the relationship, which is very damaging. This pattern significantly lessens the longevity of a marriage.

This is not to say that yelling or throwing objects is a better method than withdrawing. The study found that lower divorce rates were found in couples who both employed constructive strategies to deal with conflict.

Read more here.



February 21, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Home-wrecking Oscar?

From ABC:

It's easy to name stars who won the Oscar for Best Actress and went on to see their relationships go belly up.

Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Halle Berry, Hilary Swank, Reese Witherspoon, Kate Winslet and, of course last year's winner, Sandra Bullock, make it seem like some sort of Oscar Curse is going on

Scientists from the University of Toronto wanted to see if was scientifically legit or just paranoia. After crunching the numbers, they found that of the 265 married women who have been nominated for Best Actress from the beginning of the modern Oscars in 1936 to the present, 159 of them got divorced. That's a whopping 60 percent.

They compared the divorce rate of women who were nominated for Best Actress but didn't win against those who did take home the gold, and found that the winners were 1.68 times more likely to head to divorce court and have a 63 percent chance of having a shorter marriage than their fellow nominees.

And while they didn't have the data to compare, it's anecdotely much, much higher than the divorce rate at large.

Also interesting, the scientists compared the divorce rate for Best Actor winners and Best Actor nominees and they found there was virtually no difference there. In other words, the same effect isn't happening for men.

Watch a related clip and read more here.



February 19, 2011 in Divorce (grounds) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)