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Recession linked to first rise in divorce since 2003.

THE number of couples getting divorced is increasing, according to figures published yesterday.

Data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed the number of divorces in England and Wales in 2010 was 119,589, a 4.9% increase since 2009, when there were 113,949 divorces. It is the first year the number of divorces has increased since 2003.

The figures equate to a rate of 11.1 people divorcing per 1,000 of the married population in 2010, up from a rate of 10.5 in 2009, the ONS said.

Fiona Wood, a partner with the law firm Pannone, said: "I suspect that the number of divorces climbed in 2010 due to the effects of the recession, which really began in earnest in 2008, starting to impact on personal circumstances. "It is also worth considering whether recession is the cause of divorce or if it merely exacerbates existing issues. I think that the latter is more likely to be true."

Compared with 2009, divorce rates rose across all age groups for women, while for men the rates increased in all age groups above 25 years.

Women in their late 20s had the highest divorce rates of all the female age groups, with 25.9 females divorcing per 1,000 married women aged 25 to 29.
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Dec 9, 2011
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