When Do Most Divorces Happen in the UK?


Divorce is a legal process that dissolves a marriage and allows individuals to move on with their lives as single individuals. While it has become more common in recent years, divorce can still be a challenging and emotional experience for those going through it. In the United Kingdom (UK), there are specific requirements for getting a divorce, and the process can vary slightly depending on where you live in the country.

One question that often arises when discussing divorce is about the timing of it. When do most divorces happen in the UK? Is there a specific time of year or age range where divorces are more prevalent? Here we will explore some statistics and factors that may influence when individuals choose to get a divorce in the UK.

Divorce Rates in the UK

According to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), there were over 107,000 divorces granted in England and Wales in 2019. While this number may seem high, it is actually a decrease from previous years, with a peak of over 153,000 divorces occurring in 2003. This decrease could be attributed to changing attitudes towards marriage and relationships, as well as the rise of cohabitation and same-sex marriages.

Time of Year

While there is no set time of year when most divorces happen in the UK, research has shown that the beginning of the year seems to be a popular time for couples to make this decision. In 2019, January and September saw the highest number of divorces filed, with peaks in March and April as well. This trend could be related to couples reassessing their marriage after the holiday season or following a summer break where issues may have come to light.

Age Range

The most recent data from the ONS also shows that the average age for individuals getting divorced in the UK is 46.7 for men and 44.5 for women. This age range has been steadily increasing over the years, with more couples choosing to divorce later in life after many years of marriage.

If you are thinking about divorce or separation, contact a family solicitor in Basingstoke. Divorce is stressful, but they are here to help you, whether through litigation or mediation.

Factors that Influence Divorce Timing

There are many factors that can contribute to when someone chooses to get a divorce in the UK. Some of these factors may include:

  • Length of marriage: Couples who have been married for a shorter period may choose to divorce sooner than those who have been together for many years.
  • Children: Having children can often delay the decision to get divorced, as couples may try to work through their issues for the sake of their children.
  • Financial stability: Divorce can be expensive, and individuals may choose to wait until they are in a more stable financial position before proceeding with divorce proceedings.
  • Infidelity: This can be a major factor for some couples in deciding to end their marriage, regardless of how long they have been together.
  • Communication issues: Poor communication can lead to an unhealthy relationship and ultimately, divorce. Couples may try to work on their communication skills before deciding to end their marriage.


While there is no specific time of year or age range when most divorces happen in the UK, it is clear that this is a common occurrence in today’s society. With changing attitudes towards marriage and relationships, individuals may choose to end their marriage at any point in their lives. It is important for those going through a divorce to seek support and guidance during this difficult time. So if you or someone you know is going through a divorce, remember that it’s never too late to seek help and find happiness again.

So whether it happens in January or September, at age 30 or 50, the most important thing is to prioritize your own well-being and do what is best for you. Divorce may be the end of a marriage, but it can also be the beginning of a new and fulfilling chapter in your life. So don’t be afraid to seek support and move forward towards a brighter future. As the saying goes, “When one door closes, another one opens.” Wishing you strength and happiness on your journey.