If you are considering a divorce after the holidays, you are not the only one. According to the Chicago Tribune, the number of divorce cases increases by over 30 percent in the weeks following Christmas. Some law firms have even given the Monday after Christmas break the name, “Divorce Day,” because of the number of divorce cases they receive.
Psychologists suggest several reasons for the post-Christmas divorce trend. Some of the most common reasons include:
The holidays are stressful: Holidays can bring anxiety to even the happiest couples. With the additional pressure of financial burdens, cooking and in-laws, unhappy couples can become even unhappier. A big fight over the holidays can often lead to a divorce in the new year.
Couples think the holidays will bring them back together: According to a recent article, one in 10 couples considering divorce said their decision to get divorced is based on if they get along over the holidays. However, psychologists say this pressure can put a lot of divorce on couples considering divorce, which often leads to a disastrous holiday.
Leaving a spouse is a new year’s resolution: Some couples stay together during the holidays for their children, while having the intention to file for a divorce when the holidays are over. Filing for divorce after the holidays is part of some people’s “new year, new me” mentality.
Stipulations in postnuptial and prenuptial agreements: Some marriage agreements require that the marriage lasts five, ten, or 20 years before a spouse is entitled to receive certain assets in a divorce. A new calendar year might mean a person has fulfilled his or her requirements.
Tax purposes: Filing taxes jointly can save some married couples a lot of money. Filing for divorce in the new year gives some people the peace of mind that they can file their taxes jointly for the previous year.
The stress of the holidays pales in comparison to deciding if a divorce is right for you. It can be beneficial to speak with an experienced family law attorney to help you determine what steps you should take moving forward.