The statistics tell the story, at least part of it.
Divorce filings surge throughout the first quarter of every year. That’s indisputable.
As for why, that is anecdotal, conjecture.
One attorney posits that tax refunds provide couples with the funds to pay for divorce.
There certainly is some truth in that for some couples.
But the more powerful forces driving the surge are likely emotional more than financial.
Unhappy couples, particularly those with children, often tough out the last couple of months of each year – the holiday season – for the sake of the children.
Divorce statistics typically reflect a dip in divorce filings during the holiday season.
But the couples who stay together for the kids, or appearances, are often especially miserable during the holidays, whether due to the pretense or just too much time off and togetherness.
With the arrival of the new year, they are often chomping at the bit.
Some have even made the arrangements in advance and just need to “pull the trigger”.
Others are first ready to begin their preparations in earnest now.
Circumstances permitting, this can be a perfect time to:
- update your designation of health care surrogate or proxy or medical power of attorney
- update your will and estate plan
- close joint bank and credit card accounts
- update insurance beneficiary designations where appropriate and re-evaluate types of coverages for gaps as well as amounts
- review your investment portfolio against your current individual needs and objectives and
- get a handle on your expenses and income and create a budget
Read more in
- this [St. Joseph, MO] News-Press article: ‘Divorce season’ begins the new year and
- this CNBC article: It’s January, also known as divorce month. Here’s how to cope.