Jan 03

Q1: Prime Time to File for Divorce?

Written by: Megan Dell

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A lot of people file for divorce at the beginning of the year. While divorce professionals don’t all agree in the reasons why this happens, here are a few theories.

The Holidays Are Over

Our culture has a tendency to romanticize the holiday season, and those who are struggling with whether to divorce may hope the celebration is a chance to rekindle their marriage. Then, they are disappointed when nothing improves.

The holidays are also a time for joy and spending time with loved ones, with a specific focus on family. Sentimental feelings about the holidays often convince people not to file for divorce. Couples with children are especially sensitive because they want their children’s holiday celebrations to be untainted by tremendous changes. For this reason, many people decide they will “stick it out” until after the New Year.

file for divorceNew Year’s Resolution

The new year is often a time for self-reflection, which leads some people to decide that they need a fresh start, including ending their marriage. Starting over can begin with filing for divorce.

Financial Stresses

The number one reason that people divorce is continued disagreement about finances. For many families, the money spent on gifts at the end of the year only exacerbates this problem and may be the last straw before a spouse files for divorce.

End-of-Year Bonuses

Many people receive end-of-year bonuses from their employer. Because the division of property in divorce is often affected by when a divorce case is filed, some people decide to wait until after their spouse has received an anticipated bonus before filing.

Tax Considerations

file for divorceTax filing status is based on marital status as of December 31st of each year. Wanting to file taxes with a “married” filing status can affect when someone files for divorce.

Additionally, many people anticipate large tax refunds each year. They quickly file their returns, and then wait to receive a substantial check. For some families, a tax refund is the single largest influx of money during a year, and some spouses decide to use this refund to retain a divorce lawyer.

If you are debating whether now is the right time to file for divorce, our attorneys are available to discuss your case. Schedule a consultation to talk with us about your situation.