Divorce Rates Are Rising Due to COVID-19
When the pandemic began affecting Americans and states across the country went under lockdown, psychologists and other experts suggested that self-quarantine and stay-at-home orders could result in a higher number of divorces once courts reopened. While many courts across the country remain closed, many have reopened, and parties can again move forward with divorce proceedings. In some cases, even if physical courtrooms are closed, it is still possible to file for divorce through remote or virtual means.
According to a recent report from NBC News, the experts were right: divorce rates are rising nationwide, and that increase in divorce filings is being attributed to the coronavirus pandemic.
Quarantining and Social Distancing Are Leading to More Divorce Filings
The report suggests that, over the summer, more and more people have begun taking steps to file for divorce. While social distancing is extremely difficult emotionally and psychologically for many people, “it can also be difficult to isolate with those you love,” the report underscores. Indeed, when people are forced to be together in close quarters for months on end, issues can arise that may not have been as prominent prior to the pandemic.
The report cites a new survey that shows a surprisingly high number of married couples have sought marriage counseling in connection with relationship problems that have arisen during the pandemic, and many of those couples have even taken steps to file for divorce. Nationwide, the survey indicates that divorce rates have soared by about 34 percent since February. For many of the married couples surveyed, they reported that their “marriages [began] crumbling three weeks into quarantine.”
For some couples, being together for extended periods of time inside their homes exacerbated problems that they were already experiencing, leading them to realize that divorce likely was the best option. For other married couples, the pandemic has brought out problems that were not evident prior to the large-scale shutdowns and social distancing requirements.
Filing for Divorce in Florida
Although stay-at-home orders are not in place in Florida any longer, and many businesses have reopened that were forced to shutter earlier on in the pandemic, many Orlando residents may be considering the possibility of filing for divorce. However, you will need to make sure that you have met all requirements to file for divorce.
Under Florida law, at least one of the spouses must have lived in the state for at least six months prior to filing. If you have been quarantining in your Florida home with your spouse, chances are good that you have met this requirement. Beyond the residency requirement, you will need to plead that the marriage has become irretrievably broken. Florida is a “no fault” state for divorces, which means the party who files a petition for the dissolution of marriage must plead that the marriage is irretrievably broken instead of stating grounds for divorce.
Contact an Orlando Divorce Attorney
Do you have questions or concerns about filing for divorce in Florida? Whether you are ready to begin the divorce process or you have an inquiry about eligibility, one of our experienced Orlando divorce attorneys can assist you. Do not hesitate to get in touch with a family law attorney at our firm. Contact Anderson & Ferrin today for more information.