examine reasons for change in divorce rate since 1970

Topics: Divorce, Marriage, Family law Pages: 3 (990 words) Published: November 4, 2013
Examine the reasons for changes in divorce rate since 1970 Since the 1960’s divorce rate began to increase dramatically but the biggest rise in divorce rate was in 1972 when it doubled and was 120,000. The divorce rate continued to rise and in 1993 reached its peak at 180,000. There has been explanations for the rise in divorce which are: secularisation, changes in law, divorce had become cheaper and also changing attitudes in society especially with women as they had begun to receive more rights. By the times divorce had become a lot more socially acceptable. In the 19th Century divorce was extremely difficult to obtain, more so for women. Eventually in 1923 grounds were equalised for men and women, but this was followed by a sharp rise in the number of divorce petitions from women. Again in 1972, the grounds widened to ‘irretrievable breakdown’ which made divorce easier to obtain and produced a doubling of the divorce rate overnight. The introduction of legal aid for divorce cases in 1949 lowered the cost of divorce. With each change in the law divorce rates have risen. The new right are against the introduction of new laws which make marriage easier as it breaks up the idea of a traditional family which they support. It lead to a trend in single parent households. There were many laws which helped divorce become a lot cheaper and easier to obtain, the most significant law put in place in examining the reasons for changes in divorce rate is the law which was passed in 1971 which widened the grounds of divorce. The ‘divorce law reform act’ increased the divorce rates massively as now you were able to obtain divorce for ‘irretrievable breakdown’, this was a change to before when you could only obtain a divorce for desertion, adultery and abuse which were often very hard to find proof for this. Due to this in 1965 only 30,000 divorces were being granted. This doubled in 1972 to 120,000, this proves that the changes in the law played a huge part in the increase in...
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