The Office for National Statistics has published its statistical bulletin for divorces in England and Wales in 2012.
The bulletin presents annual statistics on divorces following court orders. It does not include divorces of couples usually resident in England and Wales that took place abroad.
The number of divorces in England and Wales in 2012 was 118,140, an increase of 0.5% since 2011, when there were 117,558 divorces.
According to the report, the number of divorces declined between 2003 and 2009 from 153,065 to 113,949 followed by a 4.9% increase in 2010. The number of divorces has remained relatively stable since 2010, fluctuating just below the number recorded in 2010
Speaking of the bulletin, Alison Hawes, a partner in the family law team at Irwing Mitchell, said:
'The small rise in divorces during 2012 could be a sign of renewed confidence following the recession; certainly there were people affected by money worries who may have put off a divorce previously. The trend in rising number of older people divorcing also continued as people are living healthier, longer lives and are wishing to pursue other relationships whereas before couples may have felt compelled to stay together in old age.'
Further key findings include:
The full report is available on the ONS website.