The Christian Institute

News Release

OPCS: 41% of Marriages will end in Divorce – Divorce Reforms will make matters worse

In the light of the new divorce figures announced today by OPCS, the Christian Institute today spoke out against the Government’s Divorce Reforms.

Speaking today, Colin Hart, Director of the Christian Institute said

“The UK has the highest divorce rate in Europe and the Government is about to further liberalise the law by adopting no-fault divorce. It is common sense that if you remove the obstacles to divorce you will increase the divorce rate.

There are a number of major US studies which show that the introduction of no-fault divorce has led to more divorces. The 1995 study by the University of Oklahoma(1) showed that no-fault divorce significantly increased the divorce rate – equivalent to 26% on the UK rate.

It is no surprise that 6 state legislatures in America are considering re-introducing fault into divorce and there are serious attempts being made to repeal no-fault in a further 8 states(2).

Most European countries have a much longer waiting period for divorces without consent than the one year proposed by the Lord Chancellor. In Germany and Italy, for example, 3 years separation is required.”

Reforms are unsafe

Colin Hart went on to say

“Any objective analysis of the research into no-fault divorce must conclude that, at the very least, there is a risk of increasing divorces. The onus is on the Government to prove that their reforms are safe. Supporters of the reforms have yet to produce any research which shows that no-fault divorce has lowered the divorce rate. But there is research which links no-fault divorce with significant increases in the rate.”

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Note to Editors

The Christian Institute carries out research into social and ethical issues from a Christian perspective.