I recently read a very interesting article entitled “Great Divide: 6 Divorce Trends of Today (infographic)” on the website Moving Forward Through Divorce.  The article discusses the six trends in people who are seeking divorces today.  As a practicing family law attorney in Dallas, Texas, I too am seeing these trends in my practice. 

1)     The rate of marriage has decreased and thus, so has the number of divorces.  This article states that since 1981, the marriage rate in the United States has decreased and by default, there are fewer divorces. 

2)     Women initiate the majority of divorces.  This article states that 66% of divorces are initiated by women.  I would agree with this statistic in my own practice.  I once heard a statistic that on average a woman contemplates filing for a divorce for a year before doing so; men contemplate filing for divorce sixty days before doing so. 

3)     Divorce for people later in life is a growing trend.  The 50 – 65 age group for divorces is rising.  I have seen this in a number of divorces in Dallas, Texas where people have spent thirty plus years together and decide to end a marriage.  These types of divorces are usually tricky because the number and type of assets as well as separate property that have been acquired during a long-term marriage. 

4)     A number of factors such as socioeconomic levels, religion, level of education, and age affect the likelihood of divorce. 

5)     Where you live can affect the likelihood of getting divorced.  The west coast has a higher concentration of divorce as compared to the northern central region of the country.   

6)     Children of divorce are more likely to have their marriage end in a divorce.  The statistic quoted in this article states that “70% of children with divorced parents vs. 40% of children with parents who are still married think that divorce is an adequate answer to marital problems.”

 

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Photo of Michelle O'Neil Michelle O'Neil

Michelle May O’Neil has 27 years’ experience representing small business owners, professionals, and individuals in litigation related to family law matters such as divorce, child custody, and complex property division. Described by one lawyer as “a lethal combination of sweet-and-salty”, Ms. O’Neil exudes…

Michelle May O’Neil has 27 years’ experience representing small business owners, professionals, and individuals in litigation related to family law matters such as divorce, child custody, and complex property division. Described by one lawyer as “a lethal combination of sweet-and-salty”, Ms. O’Neil exudes genuine compassion for her client’s difficulties, yet she can be relentless when in pursuit of a client’s goals. One judge said of Ms. O’Neil, “She cannot be out-gunned, out-briefed, or out-lawyered!”

Family Law Specialist

Ms. O’Neil became a board-certified family law specialist by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in 1997 and has maintained her certification since that time. While representing clients in litigation before the trial court is an important part of her practice, Ms. O’Neil also handles appellate matters in the trial court, courts of appeals and Texas Supreme Court. Lawyers frequently consult with Ms. O’Neil on their litigation cases about specialized legal issues requiring particularized attention both at the trial court and appellate levels. This gives her a unique perspective and depth of perception that benefits both her litigation and appellate clients.

Top Lawyers in Texas and America

Ms. O’Neil has been named to the list of Texas SuperLawyers for many years, 2011-2018, a peer-voted honor given to only about 5% of the lawyers in the state of Texas. In 2014-2018, Ms. O’Neil received the special honor of being named by Texas SuperLawyers as one of the Top 50 Women Lawyers in Texas, Top 100 Lawyers in Texas, and Top 100 Lawyers in DFW. She was named one of the Best Lawyers in America for 2016 and received an “A-V” peer review rating by Martindale-Hubbell Legal Directories for the highest quality legal ability and ethical standards.

Author and Speaker

A noted author, Ms. O’Neil released her second book Basics of Texas Divorce Law in November 2010, with a second edition released in 2013, and a third edition expected in 2015.  Her first book, All About Texas Law and Kids, was published in September 2009 by Texas Lawyer Press. In 2012, Ms. O’Neil co-authored the booklets What You Need To Know About Common Law Marriage In Texas and Social Study Evaluations.  The State Bar of Texas and other providers of continuing education for attorneys frequently enlist Ms. O’Neil to provide instruction to attorneys on topics of her expertise in the family law arena.