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Everybody Is Getting Divorced – Or Are They?

Have you ever head the expression ” 50% of marriages end in divorce”? or “Divorce is on the rise”? Everyone hears these phrases and statistics, but how true are they? Is Australia really heading down the divorce road or is it made up? Stick with us today and lets see if everybody is getting divorced as we delve into the world of divorce.

The simple fact is that these statistics are just not true. In fact ever since the Family Law Act 1975 its the lowest it has ever been. So if divorce is at an all time low then how did this saying come about? It all stated with the Family Law Act of 1975 which is also known as no fault divorce.

Everybody Is Getting Divorced: Australian Divorce Rates 1947 - 1992

Australian Divorce Rates 1947 – 1992

Before this the ‘Matrimonial Causes Act 1959’ was what Australia went by with regards to marriage legislation. It was a lot harder to get divorced before 1975. This was because there were only 14 specific grounds to get a divorce. These included adultery, imprisonment, desertion, habitual drunkenness, cruelty and insanity. Back then it was either very expensive or very hard to prove some of these things (or a combination of both).

Another solution for couples prior to the 1975 act was to lie in order to obtain a divorce. Imagine back in 1975 where couples in a marriage felt it was not working. No one necessarily did anything wrong because the law stated that 1 of the 2 had to be guilty

A person would have to say they cheated or that they were a drunk even if they did not. Nobody would like to go on record for something they did not do. However this had to happen for a divorce to go ahead. This is why divorce the divorce statistics were very low prior to 1975. These days you can go to the Births Deaths & Marriages office and get a no fault divorce. While a divorce can still be quite expense, it was not as difficult or require someone to lie about it. Take a look at the graph from the ABS regarding the 1975 Family Act and its relation to divorce. From 1947 to 1992. As you can see, there was a sharp spike during 1975.

This is due to people that were trapped in marriages that they could finally be free from. The only time you could actually say “Everybody Is Getting Divorced” is during 1975. This was when people were getting divorced by the masses compared to any other year. The only reason why divorce rates were so low prior to this was because of how hard it was obtain.

Stats From ABS
Everybody Is Getting Divorced: Divorce Rates 1994 - 2014

Divorce Rates 1994 – 2014

In fact the ratio of divorces are in decline. I went ahead and took data from the Australian Bureau Of Statistics. With their latest figures (2014 being the latest complete year to date of this article). I took data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics ranging from 1994 to 2014. As you can see that the divorce rates have improved over the past 20 years. In fact there were only 46,498 divorces in 2014 which is the lowest it has ever been since 1975.

To sum everything up, the divorce rate is decreasing over time. The next time someone says “Everybody Is Getting Divorced” or that “50% of marriages end in divorce”, you can politely correct them.

What are your thoughts on the above blog? Join the discussion and comment down below 🙂