Uptick in housing prices linked to uptick in divorce filings

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The downturn in the economy several years ago had a significant impact on the housing market. Many commentators may say that the reality is rather the reverse—that the housing market collapsed the economy. Whether a person believes in the chicken or the egg does not matter in many situations, the result meant that many homes fell underwater on the mortgage.

As the economy and housing market improve, more homeowners are finding some equity in the home. That has resulted in an increase in the number of people who are deciding to file for divorce, as housing issues are less fearsome for many people, according to commentators. An improving economy also suggests that unemployment rates may decline, easing financial fears of many.

Overall, divorce rates are not as high as they were years ago—reflecting a concurrent reduction in marriage rates in today’s culture. However, as our Columbia, Missouri area readers may know form this blog, the divorce rate among people over the age of 50 has been slowly rising over the past 20 years as baby boomers age.

Consumer confidence and the housing market has improved in recent months, and some people who deal with family law issues say that the number of people seeking to end their marriages has shown a spike in recent months.

A 2011 survey conducted at the University of Virginia suggests that the current apparent economic upturn may not necessarily be the source of the recent spike in divorce. That study shows that the economic downturn had a negative impact on marital satisfaction. There is another chicken or egg argument.

Each marriage has its own issues and structures. Family law can involve a variety of issues, such as child custody. But when children are involved in a divorce, financial issues may arise related to support. Similarly, financial issues arise in other areas as divorcing couples must reach a settlement over the division of marital property.

A Columbia, Missouri family law attorney can help an individual to understand rights and navigate the rules of Missouri law in a divorce proceeding.

Source: The Fiscal Times, “As Home Values Rise, So Does Divorce,” Blaire Briody, May 17, 2013

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