January is a time for resolutions, fresh starts and new beginnings. It's also become the most popular time of year to file for divorce.

Flickr User Linda Tunner

"There are more divorce filings in January than at any other time during the year. Many people just want a sense of a fresh, new start. For many couples who have decided to divorce but haven't decided when to file, seeing the calendar year turn over to a new one gives them new motivation to finally move on to the next phase of their lives," said Bari Weinberger, managing partner of the Weinberger Law Group.

Many couples who have children also want to get through the holidays without their kids having to think about their parents divorcing.

"This is probably why the single day in January with the highest number of divorce filings is the same day schools go back into session after the winter break," Weinberger said. "When you compare the filings in January to the filings during the end of the prior year, there is usually a dramatic uptick. The number of calls right after the holidays are tremendous. We also see another influx of calls right after Super Bowl Sunday. Many of those unfortunately have to do with domestic violence incidents."

According to Weinberger, the holidays often bring about stress and anxiety that can prompt people looking to make changes to "move on and move out and liberate themselves."

"They're coming from a very emotional place right after the holidays," Weinberger said. "People also want to make a clean financial break because it's also the start of a new tax year."

No matter what time of year it is, making the decision to get a divorce is never an easy one.

"Get advice, go talk to a lawyer, have a free consultation and become educated," Weinberger said. "You can also do some online research and read up on what needs to be done behind the scenes. And, when you're ready, then meet with someone to find out about your rights and what the best options are for you. Whether it's in January or whether it's sometime into the future or even if you decide to stay with your spouse and work toward reconciliation, the key is to just be informed and make the best decision for you and your situation."


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