Part 1: Many hesitate to remarry after divorce

People can become quite jaded when it comes to divorce. Especially in those Missouri divorces where a husband or wife really took a financial hit, some may be a little skeptical about getting remarried in the future.

In this post we are going to focus on the declining remarriage rate in the U.S. and how cohabitation is playing a role. However, in the next post we will focus on some extra steps many are taking before deciding to take the marriage plunge again.

Recently, federal data on the U.S. remarriage rate was released. The data compares 2011 with 1990 and shows the remarriage rate has decreased 40 percent over the 20 year time period. For this analysis, 2011 was the most recent year available.

In looking at this from a people standpoint, in 1990, out of every 1,000 divorced or widowed Americans, 50 ended up getting remarried. In 2011, out of every 1,000 divorced or widowed Americans only 29 remarried.

The remarriage rate has also decreased for all age groups, with the largest decrease among those younger than age 35.

Sociologist Susan Brown, the author of the analysis, said cohabitation is playing a big role in why many are not getting remarried. She said as cohabitation has become more socially acceptable, many decide to live together without the legal constraints of marriage.

In fact, according to 2012 Census data, there was an increase in the number of unmarried couples living together from 1990 to 2012. As of last year, there were 7.8 million unmarried couples living together. Close to 40 percent of those living together had also been married before.

When it comes to cohabitation and owning property together, it is important for couples in Missouri to not mistakenly think they are off the hook for complications since they are not married. Especially when children are involved, unmarried parents can find themselves facing many of the same child custody and child support concerns as those going through a divorce when there is a break up.

Source: USA Today, “Remarriage rate declining as more opt for cohabitation,” Sharon Jayson, Sept. 12, 2013

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