The average age of U.S. couples getting divorced for the first time is 30. The average length of a first marriage is about 8 years. About 41% of first marriages end in divorce. The divorce rate is much higher for second and third marriages.
We can do the math backwards from these statistics and infer that couples in the United States are still getting married, on average, at the relatively young age of 22. Does the young age of newly married couples have something to do with the 41% divorce rate and the 8-year average length of a first marriage? Let’s examine further.
Age at first marriage | Divorce rate for women | Divorce rate for men | Average rate
Under 20 | 27.6% | 11.7% | 19.7%
20 – 24 | 36.6% | 38.8% | 37.7%
25 – 29 | 16.4% | 22.3% | 19.4%
30 – 34 | 8.5% | 11.6% | 10.1%
35 – 39 | 5.1% | 6.5% | 5.8%
Look at the difference in the divorce rate between couples who first marry when they are 20 – 24 years old versus couples who first marry when they are 25 – 29 years old: almost 38% compared to about 19%. The divorce rate gets cut in half between those two age groups. The divorce rate for first marriages continues to drop off sharply as the age of the couple increases. It gets cut in half again – from 19% to 10% for the 30 – 34 year-old age group, and from 10% to 6% for the 35 – 39 year-old age group.
If we follow divorce statistics alone, they tell us that young love does not last. Our own experiences may echo that statement or we may have met our soul-mate at age 21 and enjoyed a lifetime of marital bliss. No one would suggest using these divorce statistics to predict the success or failure rate for a friend’s or one’s own marriage, however. No marriage begins with thoughts of the end, and if the end does come, it is important to be thoughtful and take the time to make sure the divorce settlement agreement contains the provisions you need to make the most out of the next stage of your life.
Considering Filing for Divorce? Contact the New Jersey Law Office of Lyons & Associates
At Lyons & Associates, we bring a high level of personalized service and attention to each of our clients, in every family law case we handle. To schedule an appointment, contact us online or call our office at 908-575-9777.