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Data suggests a 'best' age to wed to minimize divorce risks

If you ask 100 random people on the streets of Minneapolis about the right age someone should be before they get married for the first time you are likely to get 100 different answers. The presumption behind the question is that the marriage is something that the parties intend to last for their lifetimes.

That doesn't always happen, of course. Divorce is a reality for many couples these days. The process of dissolution is emotionally charged in nearly all cases, and depending on the circumstances of the couple, can prove to be legally complicated. Working with a skilled attorney is the surest way to complete the process in the most effective way so that everyone involved can get on with their lives.

Getting back to the question that launched this post, we suspect that the general trend of answers from such an unscientific survey would suggest that the older a couple is when they marry, the less likely they would be to eventually divorce. And if that were true, we would expect a chart of the data to show a steady decline in divorce risk as the age of couples increased. But a University of Utah sociologist's analysis of family data indicates otherwise.

After looking at information collected through the government's National Survey of family Growth, the researcher found that the graph is more like an inverted bell curve. And where the curve bottoms out suggests that the age at which a marriage is likely to face the least risk of ending in divorce is somewhere in the late 20s.

The author of the study emphasizes that his work only shows statistical risk. He says it shouldn't be taken to mean that getting married outside of your late 20s means your marriage will end in a divorce.

He says the biggest conclusion he draws from the work is that it is clear that individuals who marry in their 30s are more likely to divorce than those who wed in their late 20s. But what that means in the big scheme of things still has to be worked out.

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