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January Is Divorce Month, but Why?

January is the dawn of a new year.  Hopes are high.  Unfortunately, so is the tension amongst couples.  Historically, the month of January demonstrates a spike in the rate of divorce filings.  There is plenty of conjecture surrounding this unpleasant statistic, but what are the real reasons behind why people decided enough is enough in January?

People Are Resilient and Distracted

People tend to tell themselves that things will change if they can just make it to the next holiday, through a certain event, or until a promotion.  Maybe sometimes this is true, but more often it is a feeble attempt to delay the inevitable. People are inherently hopeful and easily distracted.  They are often distracted by the holidays and even more so by the holidays that precede January.

Christmas and New Year’s instill a little hope in even the most pessimistic people.  I mean, who wants to serve someone divorce papers during the holidays?  Couples come together at this time even if the relationship is on the rocks.  The flip side to this phenomenon is that, in January, people come back to reality.  When people realize the holidays did not save their marriage, divorce becomes the next step.  Resilience is commendable, but so often it just delays the inevitable.  It also does not heal old wounds.

Holiday Debt

It is a well-known fact that the number one reason for divorce is financial stress.  People often rack up insurmountable debt during the holidays for a multitude of reasons; not the least of which are:

  • Stress shopping
  • Unrealistic or non-existent budgets
  • Overall Christmas spirit
  • Too many people to buy presents for

It is very easy to get into major debt during the holiday season.  In January, credit card bills start rolling in and credit scores start suffering because of increased credit usage percentages.

This debt can be extremely stressful for couples that are already having marital problems and it can exacerbate existing tension.

How to Avoid Worsening an Inevitable January Divorce

First and foremost, do not put yourself in unmanageable debt.  If you are seeking a divorce in January, keep in mind that your income will be cut in half at least in the short term.  Anything in your name will be your responsibility.  Make sure you understand the costs associated with divorce.  Things like attorney and court fees can add up and should be considered when you are shopping for holiday items.  If you will be moving residences, keep in mind that you will have to pay first and last month’s rent on a new apartment or real estate fees if you are looking for a house.  All of these things should be considered when you are spending money during the holidays and considering a divorce in January.

If your marriage is suffering and you are considering a divorce in the coming months, you need the assistance of a skilled and licensed attorney.  You need counseling to understand the financial implications of divorce.  Elias Dsouza of Dsouza and Strachan Lawgroup Group has the knowledge and experience guide you through this unfortunate, complex circumstance.  Contact Elias today for a free consultation.

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