At this time of year I am often asked whether Divorce Day, as it is commonly referred to, is a real thing, and whether my phone will be ringing off the hook on the first working day of January.
My answer is: January does tend to see more new enquiries than other months, but there is no specific Divorce Day. There is certainly not a plethora of people desperate for a divorce on the first working day in January due to difficulties over the Christmas period.
This article in the Guardian suggests that people make the decision to separate over Christmas due to a number of pressures. In my experience, this is not the case. When people contact me in January, more often than not they have decided to separate well before the Christmas holidays, but are waiting until January. Separation is a very difficult thing to go through at any time, but before Christmas this, in my opinion, can be heightened. As the Guardian points out 'we see thousands of images of idealised romantic love', and we are told that it is a time to spend time with family and loved ones. And parents often don't want to leave in the build up to Christmas for the sake of the children.
It is also very common to see people in January who have been separated for some time, and it is their New Years Resolution to get things sorted out more formally.
Whatever the reason, I will be encouraging my clients to try mediation if it is appropriate. If it is, mediation has huge benefits. It gives people control over the decisions that will effect them and their family, and it costs much less than going to Court.
If you would like to discuss more about anything, please don't hesitate to get in touch.
Christmas... the week in which it’s traditional to look at one’s true love, think “actually, I’m not sure you’re my true love at all” and apply for a decree nisi. Last year one legal firm predicted a 332% rise in divorce inquiries in January, compared with the preceding four months, with hundreds of thousands of people apparently gritting their teeth through Christmas and new year, in order to make it to the first working day of January, nicknamed “divorce day”, before ending their marriage. This is a desperately sad state of affairs, but it makes sense. As we reach the end of the old year and prepare for a fresh start, it’s natural to take stock, assess the areas of our lives that aren’t working and vow to make dramatic changes....