Divorce Rate Drops Due to Cohabitation, Study Finds

According to the latest statistics published on Nov. 23, the number of couples divorcing has dramatically decreased by 2.9 percent.

Experts are saying that cohabitation may have greatly affected how people think of marriage. Most couples nowadays decide to live together first before getting married and it plays a major role in the divorce rate study since the statistics does not involve cohabitation separation, The Telegraph reported.

In a report by the DailyMail, the increase in numbers of couple living together could be the reason why many choose not to marry. They also want to avoid the headaches they will have to go through in case the marriage fails.

The amount of money involved in a divorce proceeding could be too much for many people, not to mention the difficult process of splitting up assets.

The news outlet added that most couples have to spend £20,000 for their wedding but study shows that marriage usually lasts for over 11 years, and half of marriages result to divorce. There are 118, 140 divorce cases in England and Wales in 2012 compared to the numbers in 2013 when it dramatically drops to 114, 720. The official record also explained why couples consider cohabitating instead of getting married.

"The latest data from the Office of National Statistics shows that the divorce rate has dropped. There are many possible reasons for this - the lack of availability of family legal aid may mean that people simply aren't getting the support they need to bring their relationship to a formal conclusion," The chairman of Resolution, Jo Edwards, said. "The rise in cohabiting couples, the fastest growing type of household in Britain, may also play a role - cohabitation separation is not included in these statistics."

JMW Solicitors' family lawyer, James Brown, also said that there is a significant number of couples who decided to get married after a period of living together because they want to have the legal rights a married couple has compared to the ones cohabitating.

 "Given that prenuptial agreements are certainly more popular but still not regarded as the norm, many businessmen and women are simply choosing not to marry and, therefore, that is affecting the numbers of divorces too," Brown said.

He then added: "If the Government was to introduce legislation providing prenups with the weight of statute as opposed to just case law, I firmly believe that more entrepreneurs would feel comfortable marrying."

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