Divorces in Brazil down 13.6% in 2020 from 2019

The decline accounts for 52,101 fewer split-ups

Published on 18/02/2022 - 13:55 By Ana Cristina Campos - Rio de Janeiro

Divorces in Brazil dropped 13.6 percent in 2020 from 2019—the equivalent of 52,101 fewer separations. All told, 331,185 divorces were granted, of which 249,874 (75%) were judicial and 81,311 (24.6%) extra-judicially recorded. In 2019, 383,286 split-ups were counted.

The figures can be found in the survey Estatísticas do Registro Civil – Divórcios 2020 (“Statistics on Civil Registration – Divorces 2020”), published today by Brazil’s statistics agency IBGE.

The shrinkage, Research Manager Klívia Brayner de Oliveira noted, was an effect of social distancing implemented as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Court doors closed to the public and delayed grants may probably account for the under-reporting of break-ups.

“The pandemic has made a significant impact on the data collection for divorces,” she pointed out, as information is gathered from printed questionnaires that must be filled out by an IBGE agent on a visit to the notary’s office.

The average age of spouses on the date of separation was 40 years old for females, 43 for males. Marriage length averaged 13 years.

Matrimony lasted less than ten years in 49.8 percent of divorces. In 24.2 percent, unions ended in 10 to 19 years. In 26.1 percent of divorces, the duration was 20 years or more.

Regarding property regime, 89.9 percent of marriages shared a portion of their assets. Also in 2020, 56.5 percent of divorces were those of couples with children under age.

In 2014, for 85 percent of split-ups, the woman was guardian of under-age kids and in 7.5 percent both shared guardianship. This landscape started to change shape after Law 13.058 from 2014, which sets shared guardianship as a priority. In 2020, for 57.3 percent of separations, guardianship fell under women’s responsibility, whereas guardianship was shared in 31.3 percent.

Translation: Fabrício Ferreira -  Edition: Graça Adjuto

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