Love lost in lockdown as Co-op reports a surge in divorce enquiries

01 June 2020

  • Divorce enquiries have increased by over 40% since the UK went into lockdown, according to Co-op
  • The legal provider anticipates further enquiries once lockdown measures ease
  • Fridays are the most common day for divorce queries

Divorce enquiries have increased by over two-fifths (42%) since lockdown measures were introduced across the UK, according to latest business insight from Co-op Legal Services.

Whilst for some families lockdown has been a rare and treasured time to spend together, for others the situation has prompted people perhaps already considering divorce, to make that final decision.

The family law provider usually prepares for an influx of enquiries from January, after what can be a difficult festive season for many households. However, since lockdown, the provider has seen enquiries increase by over two fifths, extending to three quarters (75%) for some weeks, when compared to the previous year.

Friday is the most common day for people to enquire about divorce followed by Tuesday, with the least common day being Sunday.

Co-op’s Head of Family Law believes lockdown measures have prompted couples who have been considering divorce for some time to take that step whilst they have more time on their hands.

Tracey Moloney, Head of Family Law at Co-op Legal Services, says:

“We know that divorce can be a difficult decision at any time, and often couples have already considered divorcing for a number of months and tried mediation before they begin the process. Currently, concerns about finances, employment, coupled with the fact that households are having to spend an increased amount of time together can add strain on relationships.

“However, divorce is life changing for all involved and so it’s really important that couples don’t go into divorce lightly and as a result of the current situation we find ourselves in.”

Tracey Moloney’s tips on managing divorce during Coronavirus lockdown:

  1. Be prepared: Divorce isn’t easy, it can lead to loneliness, a location change and a drop-in confidence, amongst other things. Preparing yourself for what’s to come can make it easier to deal with in the long run. Seek out community groups or new hobbies that may help you to establish a new support network.
  2. Divorce is a life-changing decision. consider other resolutions to solve your problems beforehand. It may be that your extreme circumstances have pushed you to make a decision you would normally take longer to think about.
  3. Relocation: If nobody is at fault in the marriage you will need to have lived separately for a considerable length of time, for a divorce to be granted, so think about the logistics of this whilst staying safe during this time.
  4. Consider assessing your finances between you, for an outcome that will suit you both in the long run, which will save you both time and money. However, be aware that what you think is fair may not be the same in the eyes of the law
  5. Know your rights. When children are involved in a divorce it can become more complicated. If the mother or father of your child is acting in a way that is preventing you from seeing your child, there may be action you can take such as getting a Court Order

A divorce through Co-op Legal Services costs from £600 including VAT plus £550 court fees. For more information visit: www.co-oplegalservices.co.uk

For further information contact:

Emily Penkett: Emily.Penkett@coop.co.uk / 07738621201 Maya Powell: Maya.Powell@coop.co.uk / 07773096851 Follow us on Twitter and Instagram @CoopUKpress

Notes to Editors

About Co-op Legal Services Co-op Legal Services became the first alternative business structure (ABS) in the UK in 2012 and has long been established as a market leader in Probate and estate administration and as one of the leading Will writing businesses in the UK.

In April 2018, Co-op acquired Simplify Probate, the UK’s second largest provider of probate, cementing the Co-op’s position as the leading provider of probate in the UK. Simplify Probate, which is part of the Simplify Group of companies, has been a specialist provider of probate and estate administration for more than 25 years and also runs an established Bereavement Advice Centre which provides access to practical bereavement advice online and by telephone. Co-op Legal Services is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority