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Florida divorce rates down over past 2 decades

Florida residents likely hear a lot about rising divorce rates, but not all numbers touted on the Internet are accurate. According to numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau, divorce rates in the state of Florida fell between 1990 and 2009.

The number of divorces reported in 1990 were 81,700 in the state; that's a rate of 6.3 divorces for every 1,000 people in Florida. In 2000, the rate was 5.1 with 81,900 divorces. The rate is lower because the population in the state was higher. In 2009, both numbers saw a decrease. About 80,000 people were divorced for a rate of 4.2 in every thousand.

The numbers recorded by the Census Bureau include divorces, annulments and both divorce and separate petitions filed but not complete for some locations. The numbers were taken from data compiled by the National Center for Health Statistics.

Florida is not the only state that saw a reduction in divorce rates during the time period. Most other states did as well, and the average rate for the entire U.S. dropped from 4.7 in 1990 to 3.4 in 2009.

Even so, divorce is still a reality for many couples. With national rates dropping, couples may feel pressure to try harder at their marriage. Struggling in an unhappy marriage is often unhealthy for both individuals as well as any children, though, and divorce may be the option that allows everyone to move forward with a more positive future.

Whether you're considering the possibility of divorce together or are individually working to leave an unhappy marriage, understanding the legal requirements for divorce is important. Working through the legal system in the right manner improves your chances of a more supportable and positive future.

Source: U.S. Census, "Marriages and Divorces--Number and Rate by State: 1990 to 2009" Sep. 17, 2014

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