Current Divorce Statistics

Audrey M. Jones
Divorce Statistics

Over the years, both the Center for Disease Control and U.S. Census Bureau have gathered and interpreted divorce statistics in the United States. What these agencies report regarding divorce rates in the nation might surprise you.

Regional Statistics

According to a 2011 report by the Census Bureau, in that year the South had a higher divorce rate than the Northeast. This report also shows that:

  • Women who divorced between 2010 and 2011 were more likely to receive public assistance than men who divorced during this time, with rates being 23% and 15%, respectively.
  • Of women who divorced between 2010 and 2011, 27% reported a household income of less than $25,000.

Children and Divorce

The same 2011 report from the US Census Bureau also provides statistics pertaining to children and divorce. This report states:

  • 75% of children whose parents divorced lived with their mothers
  • 28% of children living with a divorced parent lived in a household with an income below the poverty line
  • 53% of children of divorced parents were more likely to live in a rented home.

In 2011 The State of Our Unions, a report prepared for the National Marriage Project by the Universities of Maryland and Virginia, found that children of intact marriages were 14% less likely to end their future marriages in divorce. The report also shows that, in 2011, about 25% of children in the U.S. lived in a single-parent household.

Divorce Prevention Statistics

The 2011 State of our Unions report also provides statistical information concerning the best ways to prevent a divorce. This report states:

  • If you have an annual income of over $50,000, your risk of divorce decreases by 30%.
  • If you wait to marry until you're over 25 years of age, your risk of divorce decreases by 24%.
  • If your parents are happily married, your risk of divorce decreases by 14%.
  • If you have strong religious beliefs, your risk of divorce decreases by 14%.
  • If you've attended college, your risk of divorce decreases by 13%.

International Divorce Statistics

According to the United Nations Statistics Division, Eastern European countries have an average divorce rate of about five of every 1,000 marriages. Western European have slightly lower divorce rates, ranging from two to three out of every 1,000 marriages. Central American has the lowest divorce rates, with only one of every 1,000 marriages failing.

The Meaning of Divorce Statistics

Divorce statistics shed light on the number of marriages per 1,000 that end in a given year. Although not reported upon for each year, these statistics provide insight into national and international marriage and divorce trends.

Current Divorce Statistics