How the COVID-19 Epidemic May Affect the Divorce Rate
The COVID-19 epidemic has caused the majority of people to change their routines and lives to some degree. Quarantine orders, working from home, home schooling children, and the general panic surrounding the virus has led to people having to spend many hours confined with their spouses. This can be a big change for people who are used to spending the majority of their day away from home. For some, this new togetherness can lead to resolution, and for others, it can be the final straw. This new lack of freedom, accompanied by aggravating factors like fear, emotional stress, and financial hardship can put additional stress on an already strained relationship or cause even a seemingly content marriage to seem intolerable.
The forced one-on-one time combined with anxiety over health concerns, disrupted schedules and uncertainty have experts predicting that divorce rates will rise over the next year. In the past, this has been the trend following major stressful events. In the wake of epidemics, people have shown a tendency to make life-changing decisions, such as choosing to get married, changing jobs, or retiring from their careers, having children, or getting divorced. Many times, people will contemplate their life goals and realize how short life really seems. People tend to want to make changes that will ensure their happiness when a major upheaval or traumatic event threatens their routine. In the past, following natural disasters, the rate of domestic violence and divorce has risen. In a marriage that already has long-standing tensions or resentments, separation is no longer possible during the pandemic and relationships can quickly reach a breaking point.
In addition to the relationship stress the pandemic may have caused, it also presents other obstacles, such as limited court functioning. Up until recently, the courts in New York were only hearing emergency cases. Limited court functions pose potential barriers for both those people already dealing with divorce and those considering it. Court closures created problems for those trying to file the documents to initiate a divorce. This created issues with related actions, such as setting the date for valuing a couple’s joint assets, which often happens on the date the divorce commences. These potential obstacles heighten stress and anxiety for those already dealing with tense and emotional times. Courts have begun reopening on a gradual basis, and new actions are being commenced. However, there is a lot of uncertainty that comes along with that. Although we can now establish valuation dates as of the date a new action is commenced, how do we value a business which may no longer be functioning in a year when the divorce action is ready for trial?
Choosing the right professionals to help guide you through this process is extremely important, especially during these uncertain times. Our Garden City NY divorce attorneys can help navigate this unfamiliar territory are. Fass & Greenberg has the experience and knowledge to assist with decisions and can offer advice to make this process as easy and stress-free as possible. Their ability to effectively represent their clients during litigation and mediation while maintaining their professionalism and integrity is part of what sets this firm ahead of the others. Fass & Greenberg is the confident choice of Garden City NY divorce attorneys to contact for assistance with the divorce process.