Divorce, remarriage rates rise significantly


The number of divorced people in Ireland has increased by over 150 per cent in just 10 years reflecting both a higher incidence of marital breakdown and the greater number of couples availing of divorce following a mandatory period of separation.

According to data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO), the number of divorcees stood at 87,770 in 2011, up from 35,059 recorded in the 2002 population census, which was the first census conducted since the legalisation of divorce in Ireland in 1995.

In contrast the number of people identified as separated has levelled off and stood at 116,194, up marginally from 107,263 in 2006.

As divorce in Ireland usually requires a period of separation of up to five years, the CSO said the data reflected both a progression from separation to divorce, combined with new numbers joining the category of separation.

The increase in the number of divorced people has driven the marital breakdown rate - the number of separated and divorced persons as a proportion of those who were ever married-up to 9.7 per from 8.7 per cent recorded five years previously.

The figures for men and women differed with significantly more women than men recorded in both divorce and separation categories.

There were 65,361 separated women compared with 50,833 separated men, and 49,685 divorced women compared with 38,085 divorced men.

 While marital breakdown is on the rise, the proportion of the population who were married remained stable at 37 per cent.

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