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Divorce Statistics in New York City and Long Island

The state of New York added a “no-fault” ground for divorce in October 2011, eliminating the legal requirement that one of the parties to the divorce accept blame or responsibility for the breakdown of the marriage.  Prior to the addition of the no-fault ground, the three most commonly cited reasons for seeking divorce were abandonment, cruelty, and pre-divorce mutual separation (an agreement was reached containing terms of separation).

New York Divorce Rate

New York State’s divorce rate is much lower than the national average and the state has successfully maintained this low rate for several years running, with New York City and Long Island ranking near the top in lowest rates statewide.  There have been several theories as to why New York state boasts much lower rates than the rest of the country, with little hard evidence to back them up.  One theory does have statistical support in that New York’s median family income, age of first marriage (for men and women), and level of education are all higher than the national average.

From 1990 to 2010, every state in the country except for Kansas and West Virginia has experiencing a steady decline in divorce rates.  The top five states with the lowest rate are, in order: Massachusetts, Iowa, Illinois, New York, and the District of Columbia.  Each of these has less than 2.7 divorces per thousand people, while the national statistic is 3.4 divorces per thousand.

States that allow same-sex marriage have a 20% lower divorce rate than states that do not allow them, and some states that do recognize gay marriage do not recognize divorce among gay couples.  New York recognizes both by virtue of the fact that one domestic status (marriage) logically includes the other (divorce).  One prominent New York divorce attorney, who handled Rudy Giuliani’s divorce, stated that gay divorces are coming down the pike, but not nearly at the same rate as heterosexual divorces.  Las Vegas, which has the highest divorce rate among metropolitan areas, also has the highest rate of suicide.

Hire a New York Divorce Attorney

No matter what your situation, divorce proceedings are always an unpleasant experience.  You should never try to tackle the challenge of handling divorce on your own.  An experienced and competent New York divorce attorney can provide compassionate and confidential representation, make sure you’re fully aware of the complexities involved in all stages of the case, and give you invaluable legal assistance backed by their years of legal education and courtroom experience.