More than half of divorcees admitted they scheduled announcing their separation to make the break up as easy as possible.
New research has revealed a trend of unhappy couples diarising their divorce with some planning their break up more than a year in advance.
The most popular reasons that people gave for holding off on splitting up were because they wanted to wait until their children had left home or that they didn’t want to end their marriage while their parents were still alive.
But others admitted to being financially motivated and waiting until their house was worth more, they had sold a family business or until their spouse had benefitted from an inheritance.
The research, which surveyed over 1,500 divorced Brits on the circumstances of their divorce, was commissioned by law firm Slater and Gordon after their family lawyers reported an increase in clients using them for advice months and sometimes years before announcing their relationship had come to an end.
While four in ten said they had agreed with their partner to wait until a certain date before splitting, 19 per cent said that despite deciding that the marriage was over they didn’t tell their partner of their plans to divorce them at a later date.
Amy Harris, divorce lawyer at Slater and Gordon, said: “We are finding that people are much more organised when it comes to thinking about a divorce these days with more and more clients coming to us to get advice on how to best plan and announce the end of their marriage.”
“Often the main reason is that they want to wait until their children have left home or they get their finances and housing situations in order so they can share all the details about the future with their loved ones.
“Sometimes it’s because both parties want to end the marriage but not while their parents are still alive. If elderly parents are unwell or very religious their children will often try and hide their relationship problems from them until after they have passed away.
Two per cent put off announcing their intention to divorce until a family holiday was out of the way while four per cent waited until after a celebration, like their child’s birthday or Christmas.
Some waited until their partner had retired, so they could organise their financial situation and others waited until they had managed to save enough money or found work, so they could afford to live independently.
Three per cent said although they had decided their marriage was over; they still waited until they had found someone else, before leaving their partner.
36 per cent of people said that they didn’t regret waiting, as it was better for their family and friends. Although Six in 10 did wish they had divorced earlier.
On average people worked at their relationship for two and a half years before they realised that a divorce was the only way they could be happy.
Amy Harris, family lawyer for Slater and Gordon, said: “My advice to anyone who is considering divorce would be to seek advice from a family lawyer as soon as possible, although you may not want to get a divorce immediately, delaying matters could be detrimental to your case in the long term.”