The divorce rate in South Florida could be a reliable indicator of when our economy begins to head out of the recession. Fort Lauderdale divorce attorneys have continuously believed that divorce is recession proof. However, the decreasing divorce rates in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties, as well as across the country, reveal otherwise.
The reason for the decreased rate of divorce is the significant decrease in the amount of money available for equitable distribution. When a marriage is dissolved the marital assets are equitably distributed. The most valuable asset usually is the marital home. There are two typical scenarios regarding the marital home: (1) the parties sell the home and the proceeds are split equitably; or, (2) one party keeps home and the value of the home is deducted from the overall amount that party receives in equitable distribution.
In our current economic situation, the housing market is declining and so the value of the marital home has diminished. Thus, the parties are at a loss if they decided to sell the home and split the proceeds. This loss means the parties cannot afford to find new homes on their own. Therefore, the divorce rate has dropped.
It is not just the decrease in home value that has caused the diminished divorce rate, but also the depleting 401(k)’s and the plummeting stock market that have had an effect as well. With less money to go around, there is less to for equitable distribution; and therefore, it is unbeneficial to seek a divorce in this economy.
When our country sees an upswing in the divorce rate this change could be an indication that the economy is leaving the recession behind.