Millennials do not get divorced as often as baby boomers, and the divorce rate in the United States has been dropping. One report claimed that it fell a full 18 percent between just 2008 and 2016. Why is this happening?
There are a few reasons. One is that the average age for marriage keeps on climbing. Studies have shown that those who get married very young — 18, for instance — have higher divorce rates. If more people wait until their mid-20s, they may theoretically avoid some of the “mistakes” that people made when rushing into marriage at a younger age.
Another reason is that more and more young people just skip getting married in the first place. While living together was rather taboo for couples in previous generations, it is more widely accepted now. This means that couples who date, move in together and then break up do not add to the divorce statistics.
However, that does not mean that they are not facing some of the same challenges. They may have bought homes and other assets together or have joint savings for retirement. Some have children together. Just because they never technically got married and divorced just changes the label, but the relationship is fundamentally the same.
This helps show why it is important for anyone in a committed, long-term relationship to know exactly what legal rights they have when it ends. The whole process can get very complicated, especially when children are involved. People need to know where they stand and what steps they can take to protect themselves moving forward.