Divorce Statistics in America

November 15th, 2014

It is said that 75% of statistics are made up on the spot… and just to be clear, that specific statistic was also made up on the spot.  The purpose of telling you this, is so that you understand that every statistic you hear about marriage and divorce may not be accurate.  And even if it is accurate, it may be misleading.

When looking at statistics about marriage and divorce, the first thing you need to do to establish the credibility of the stat is to consider the source.  Are you reading about it on your mother’s friend’s sister’s blog, or are you reading it on a government website?

The Center for Disease Control actually reports on marriage and divorce statistics as part of the National Vital Statistics System.

Here are some recent numbers from CDC.gov:

Provisional number of marriages and marriage rate: United States, 2000-2011

Year Marriages Population Rate per 1,000 total population
2011 2,118,000 311,591,917 6.8
2010 2,096,000 308,745,538 6.8
2009 2,080,000 306,771,529 6.8
2008 2,157,000 304,093,966 7.1
2007 2,197,000 301,231,207 7.3
20061 2,193,000 294,077,247 7.5
2005 2,249,000 295,516,599 7.6
2004 2,279,000 292,805,298 7.8
2003 2,245,000 290,107,933 7.7
2002 2,290,000 287,625,193 8.0
2001 2,326,000 284,968,955 8.2
2000 2,315,000 281,421,906 8.2

1 Excludes data for Louisiana.

Note: Rates for 2001-2009 have been revised and are based on intercensal population estimates from the 2000 and 2010 censuses. Populations for 2010 rates are based on the 2010 census.

Source: CDC/NCHS National Vital Statistics System.

 

Provisional number of divorces and annulments and rate: United States, 2000-2011

Year Divorces & annulments Population Rate per 1,000 total population
20111 877,000 246,273,366 3.6
20101 872,000 244,122,529 3.6
20091 840,000 242,610,561 3.5
20081 844,000 240,545,163 3.5
20071 856,000 238,352,850 3.6
20061 872,000 236,094,277 3.7
20051 847,000 233,495,163 3.6
20042 879,000 236,402,656 3.7
20033 927,000 243,902,090 3.8
20024 955,000 243,108,303 3.9
20015 940,000 236,416,762 4.0
20005 944,000 233,550,143 4.0

1 Excludes data for California, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Louisiana, and Minnesota.

2 Excludes data for California, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, and Louisiana.

3 Excludes data for California, Hawaii, Indiana, and Oklahoma.

4 Excludes data for California, Indiana, and Oklahoma.

5 Excludes data for California, Indiana, Louisiana, and Oklahoma.

Note: Rates for 2001-2009 have been revised and are based on intercensal population estimates from the 2000 and 2010 censuses. Populations for 2010 rates are based on the 2010 census.

Source: CDC/NCHS National Vital Statistics System.

Just remember if you are trying to learn more about marriage and divorce in America, don’t trust everything you read.  Look to many reports, compare data, and always consider the source.



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