How Will My Second Divorce be Different?

No one gets married with the hope that they will end up getting divorced. However, many marriages in Michigan and throughout the country do end in divorce. While a recent article in Bloomberg reports that the overall divorce rate in the U.S. has declined in the last decade, approximately 40% of all marriages still end in divorce. Often, when a person goes through a divorce, it takes some time to readjust to an unmarried lifestyle. Yet, in most cases, divorcees will end up looking for a new partner. For many of those individuals, there is a strong desire to get remarried. However, according to an article in Psychology Today, second and third-and subsequent-marriages tend to fail at much higher rates than first marriages. Accordingly, many people who get remarried will end up getting divorced a second time.

Why do second marriages result in divorce more often than first marriages? What will be different about your second divorce?

Why Second and Subsequent Marriages are More Likely to Result in Divorce

According to the article in Psychology Today, the more times you have already been married and divorced, the higher the likelihood that a new marriage will end in divorce. As the article points out, previous studies have shown that almost half of all first marriages result in divorce, while almost 70% of second marriages ultimately end in divorce, and nearly three-quarters of all third marriages result in divorce. Why are subsequent marriages more likely to end with a divorce?

There are numerous theories that account for the rising divorce rate in second and third marriages, including but not limited to the following:

  • Second and subsequent marriages are "rebound" relationships, and the parties have not given themselves a significant amount of time to recover from the initial divorce;

  • People enter into a second or third marriage without dealing with the problems that led to their first divorce, and they repeat the same mistakes over again;

  • Someone in a second or third marriage already has been through a divorce and does not consider it a "tragedy," and thus may be more likely to file for divorce; and

  • Fewer people in second and third marriages have minor children from the marriage, which is often considered to be the "glue" holding the relationship together or the "stabilizing factor" of the marriage.

What to Expect from Your Second Divorce

If you were divorced for the first time in Michigan and are planning to file for divorce in Michigan a second time, the legal process will be much the same. However, there may be a couple of key financial differences:

  • Alimony or support now may be necessary for more than one spouse-in other words, just because you are already paying alimony does not preclude you from having to pay alimony to your spouse from your second marriage; and

  • Child support may be necessary from both marriages-similar to paying alimony for both your first and second spouse, if you have minor children from your second marriage, you will be required to pay child support if you are the non-custodial spouse.

  • Premarital or separate property may be subject to division if you don't have a valid prenuptial agreement.

When the court calculates your income both for purposes of alimony and child support from your second marriage, it can take into account your support obligations from your first marriage.

Contact a Michigan Divorce Attorney

Do you have questions about getting divorced a second time? A Michigan divorce attorney can speak with you. Contact the Law Offices of Michael A. Robbins today.