By The Numbers: Divorce Statistics in New York
It happens every day—couples get married and other couples get divorced. According to the United States Census Bureau, in the United States, the national divorce rate per 1,000 people in 2009 was 9.2 percent for men, and 9.7 percent for women.
Closer to home, the U.S. Census Bureau Report Marital Events of Americans notes the New York divorce rate for men and women in 2009 was below the national average. A demographer with the Census Bureau notes southern states had higher divorce rates as well as higher marriage rates—while residents of northern states like New York delay marriage and have lower overall marriage rates.
In October 2010, New York opened the door to no-fault divorce, a move critics claimed would defile the institution of marriage by couples stampeding for the door. Interestingly, total divorce figures for years 2008-2010 look like this:
While not yet available, a bump in total divorces filed in 2011 may reflect a backlog rather than chronic upward trend in divorce in New York. As well, the notable decline in divorce in 2009, possibly fueled by recessionary conditions, may level out with an improved economy. For all three years, outside of New York City, leading counties for divorce were Suffolk, Westchester, and Nassau.
Statistics involve a lot of numbers. But the most important number is two—the two people who decide when to begin a marriage—and when to end it.