Divorce: is it just a matter of time?

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in Family Law on Wednesday, January 29, 2014.

Is it possible to make the divorce rate go down by changing a law? That would be intention of a state representative in Oklahoma.

The state suffers from the second highest divorce rate in the country and he believes that if couples had to wait six months to proceed with their divorce, it may give them some time to change their minds.

Now, family law and divorce encompass many complex issues. Some people may have been too immature when they decided to marry, and now, with age and experience, they recognize their miscalculation.

For others, problems may develop years into the marriage, such as domestic violence, drug and alcohol addiction or substance abuse issues, or there may be chronic infidelity.

Financial problems may exacerbate other problems within the marriage, and job loss or spending habits may push a relationship to the breaking point.

And any one of these issues may leave one party exhausted and demoralized. Their marriage, they may feel, is too damaged to repair. Still others may have grown apart, and feel there is no love remaining, and are looking for a fresh start with a new relationship.

Will mandating that all couples wait an additional six months before moving forward with their divorce make a significant difference in the divorce rate? And how will we know?

The bill contains provisions that would exempt divorces due to child abuse, adultery, domestic violence, abandonment, extreme cruelty and habitual drunkenness.

The exceptions could swallow the rule, and some worry that forcing couples to delay a divorce could risk creating additional cases of domestic violence.

Source:, “Oklahoma state representative files bill aimed at curbing divorce rate,” Associated Press, January 27, 2014

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