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Borger a microcosm of the country on divorce

No city or town in the United States saw a bigger rise in divorce than Borger, Texas, according to data from the U.S. Census. This small town, located in the Texas panhandle, has seen its divorce rate nearly double since 2007. The latest data revealed that 15.2 percent of adults in the town were divorced.

While Borger might present an extreme case, it is a reflection of what is going on throughout most other parts of the country. Census data showed that two-thirds of all cities in the United States saw an uptick in the number of divorced adult residents. Overall, 10.9 percent of adults in the United States are divorced.

According to some family law attorneys, this trend could be attributed to the recent economic collapse, which may have caused stress and misery at home. The anemic economy was compounded in Texas towns like Borger when a major drought struck in 2011. Those in the agricultural business suffered and oil field workers were forced to work inconsistent schedules, causing additional strain on marriages.

The Texas Supreme Court may have paved the way to the increasing divorce rate by making it possible for spouses to handle their own legal work during a divorce. A Texas divorce lawyer offered that speculation after explaining that even though divorce rates have spiked, she has not seen an uptick in clients.

However, many Texans are bound to make mistakes when handling their own legal work and they are able to fall back on divorce lawyers to clean up those mistakes.

Wherever spouses are located, and for whatever reason prompts them to do so, divorce can be complicated, especially when the process grows contentious. Apparently now more than ever, Texans need to familiarize themselves with their rights, and the divorce process in general, if their marriage falls apart.

Source: Bloomberg, "Gusher of Texas Oil-Patch Divorces Leads Breakup Trend," Frank Bass, Dec. 19, 2012

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