The Great Divorce Recession of 2009

The Great Divorce Recession of 2009

You have heard of the Great Depression. But have you heard of the Great Divorce Recession? Probably not, because I just coined the phrase. That’s right. You heard it here first, baby!

What do I mean by the Great Divorce Recession.  Well, when the economy collapsed in 2008, it had trickle down, reverberating effects on the nation’s marriages. When the good times stopped rolling, people literally had to take stock and ask themselves IS THE MARRIAGE THAT BAD? Read  that post that I’ve just linked and check out my November 2008 posts generally, here:

So that is basically what I think happened to divorces in America. After the 2008 economic meltdown, people were forced to ask themselves if their marriages where “that bad” and the answer for many was “no, it’s not.”  What it probably needed was a “bail-out” so they probably stayed in more, and talked over a lot of things and decided to just hold tight and watch and see what happens.

January is typically the best month for divorce lawyers in terms of the flurry of divorce filings. But those numbers were not so impressive this year. Except for those lawyer whose client are high net worth and whose financial stability is impervious to the markets.

But who are those people?  I mean, other than Elie Hirschfeld and his wife, Dr. Susan Hirschfeld, I haven’t heard of a heck of a lot of high net worth divorce filings in New York in 2009. Even the “billionaires” are cautious. They are hanging on to their spouses and they are hanging on to their real estate. (Billionaire real estate mogul, Donald Trump said something to the effect of “nobody is selling real estate unless there’s been a death, divorce, or debt problems that forces them to sell.”)

Things could change, however, with Obama’s stimulus package. With any luck, the good times will start to roll again pretty soon.  That may be good for divorce lawyers, but bad for marriages – unless, of course, the marriage has “irretrievably broken down.”

Go here for posts with the term “irretrievably broken down” Because, recession or not, no one should even think of divorce if there is even a sliver of hope that the marriage is viable. The answer to the question, “has the marriage irretrievably broken down” should be yes. A strong yes. Before anyone even thinks of consulting with a divorce lawyer.

I have to say, though, that even with the stimulus package, I don’t think the divorce recession will pass anytime soon. I predict that 2009 will go down as the year with the least divorce filings in recent history. That’s probably going to mean that divorce lawyers are going to have to find other ways to subsist. Maybe marriage counseling?

Originally published 2/15/09

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2 thoughts on “The Great Divorce Recession of 2009”

  1. the Economic recession made a lot of jobless people in my own country. We could only hope that our economy becomes strong again 🙂 –

  2. Jeannie,

    Interesting perspective. Makes perfect sense. The economy and housing crisis are forcing people to be more thoughtful with their actions. Great to hear that it is trickling down to the marriage contract. I have gone through a divorce and don’t recommend it if it can be avoided. I am finding that couples don’t really make any good faith effort to work things out. Seems easier for some people to just give up.

    Thanks for your thoughtful examination.

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