Why is January Such a Busy Month for Divorce?

New year is usually seen as a time to begin afresh in terms of renewal and planning for changes. Apart from them, this can imply reassessing personal acquaintances and weighing the relations with their spouses. Therefore, it is not surprising that January registers a significant increase in divorce filings.

But why is January so packed with divorces? This might be affected by various factors.

The Holiday Season

Firstly, the holiday season. The holidays are one of the most stressful and tense periods for many couples. The pressure of living up to the image of a joyful and flawless family, coupled with the Christmas season as well as gift-giving, contributes negatively to marriage. Sometimes, this may reveal those unspoken issues and challenges in a relationship that could eventually lead to divorce.

Second, they could also emphasize communication and connection problems between a husband and wife. Considering that both sets of couples have full and rather time-demanding work schedules during the coming year, they would simply hide these problems from sight. Therefore, it is convenient for such issues to come out in the finer form as they spend a lot of time together during the holidays and long to start all over again with the new year.

Keeping up With the Joneses

Another reason might concern the Joneses syndrome. This is a question that should always be asked: when did all of this begin? For couples, it can be very destructive, especially when they compare themselves to their neighbors or relatives who seem to be living a blessed life. This may cause frustrations, insecurity, and even divorce itself sometimes.

January represents the month for resolutions or goal setting. Countless individuals regard the start of a new year as an opportunity to change and develop. This can also be seen in their relationships. Furthermore, a surge in divorce filings follows the sentiment of discontent or dissatisfaction with married life since the new year may seem such an opportunity for change.

Financial Reasons

The other financial reason that can account for the rise in divorce rates during January is that the majority will wait until after Christmas to file for divorce, mainly due to the high cost of gifts, travel, and relative visits. When the holiday season is over and a new year starts, couples can feel financially more stable to go with divorce without wasting their money on holidays.

The beginning of a new calendar year may also introduce changes to legislation on taxes that could affect divorce agreements. Therefore, they may sometimes desire to divorce in January rather than in later months when there are significant financial reserves. This particularly applies to high-income earners whose income likely changes their tax bracket amount or deductions.

Attorneys’ Schedule

Also, an increase in the number of divorce attorney practicing at this time may be another cause for flooding. It is also because most lawyers are on holiday with their families, so they delay divorce proceedings. This may lead to a line of clients and masses coming in with the divorce filing cadres for the new year.


In 2020, there were more than 630,000 divorces in the US. Some states have higher than average divorce rates, such as Florida, which saw 3 new divorces per 1000 people. January is a busy month for divorce filings and there are various reasons that contribute to it. The rise of divorce filings could be due to the pressure and stress of the Christmas season, new hope for a fresh handshake, or any other financial features. No matter the reasons, a new year is usually synonymous with change, and for some couples, it may be their divorce.