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Changes in divorce rates since 1990

Baby boomers in Orange County might be more likely to seek divorce than people of a similar age were in 1990. The divorce rate for people 50 and older was about 10 per 1,000 married people in 2015 compared to around 5 per 1,000 married people for the same age group in 1990.

However, the divorce rate is still higher for people younger than 50 than for those 50 and older. For people in the 40-to-49-year-old age group, divorces went up slightly from 18 per 1,000 married people in 1990 to 21 per 1,000 married people in 2015. There was actually a decline in the 25-to-39-year-old age group. These went down to 24 out of 1,000 married people from 30 in 1990.

Experts believe that the lower divorce rate among younger adults is because people are marrying later in life. Baby boomers, in contrast, have a long history of unstable marriages. This means that many of them are in remarriages, and these marriages tend to be more vulnerable to divorce than first marriages.

Longevity in a marriage is also a factor. People who had been married for less than 10 years and who were 50 and older were more likely to divorce than those married longer. However, divorce still happens after decades of marriage, and in 2015, there were six divorce per 1,000 people 65 and older.

How long a marriage has lasted and the age of the individuals getting a divorce may be factors in how the divorce proceeds. Older individuals who are getting a divorce might be concerned about how they will divide a lifetime of assets. On the other hand, if the marriage is a second or third one, the individuals might have a prenuptial agreement in place although it may be possible to challenge one of these.

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