Thursday, March 28, 2013

Blog about Blog

I have been doing this blog since May of 2008.  This is my 273 blog.  We have had a total of 15,439 hits.
The five most popular blogs in order of number of hits and the date of the blog are:
1.       Divorce Proverbs and Aphorisms Mar 21, 2008, 1410
2.       Divorce and Marriage Acronyms Jan 20, 2011, 515
3.       New Arizona Child Support Guidelines  Jul 17, 2010,  263
4.       If Things Fall Apart, Who Gets the Ring? Oct 20, 2008, 211
5.       Dementia and Divorce Jul 10, 2010, 205
6.       Humor in Mediation and Divorce Feb  5, 2008, 163
7.       Divorce Haiku Sept 4, 2010, 159
8.       Dinosaurs Divorce Jan 9, 2012, 86
9.       Divorce, Mediation and Broadcast Call Letters Feb 8, 2012
10.   Divorce Games Part 2 Sep 11, 2010 74
When writing a blog you never know if it will be popular or not.  I was surprised and don’t know why the Divorce Proverbs and Aphorisms has been so popular and the same with Acronyms.  I can only assume that people search for a Proverb or Acronym and the blog comes up. I did a Google search for QDRO and the blog did not come up but when I searched QDRO "center for divorce mediation" it came up on the first page.  I think that was just a little forced.  Parents are very concerned about child support so I can understand by Child Support is 3.  I was amused that Who Gets the Ring was 4.  Dementia and Divorce being 5th, may indicate a problem which is not getting enough attention.    I wanted to check the least popular but could not get that statistic.  Also note that none of my recent blogs made the list. Most recent and most popular was Divorce Mediation and Call Letters on February 8, 2012 and that had only 83 hits.  I guess this is also a function of age.  The longer the blog is up, the more hits it gets.  I was pleased that Dinosaurs Divorce which was in January 2012 had 86 hits.   
I found it interesting how many hits we got from outside the United States. See below. Why was Russia second?
United States-8481
United Kingdom-545
South Korea-180
The hits have some correlation with the list in order of most divorces in a country. See below.
1. United States
2. Puerto Rico   
3. Russia
4. United Kingdom
5. Denmark
6. New Zealand
7. Australia
8. Canada
9. Finland
10. Barbados
As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at CDM (273) 3/27/13

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

China Marriage and Divorce

China has been in the Marriage and Divorce news lately.  Once on March 9, 2013 article in the New York Times by Brook Larmer article entitled “The Price of Marriage in China.”  See entire article at           /in-a-changing-china-new-matchmaking-markets.html

Larmer says, “Three decades of combustive economic growth have reshaped the landscape of marriage in China. A generation ago, China was one of the world’s most equal nations, in both gender and wealth. Most people were poor, and tight controls over housing, employment, travel and family life simplified the search for a suitable match — what the Chinese call mendang hudui, meaning roughly “family doors of equal size.”  ….

China’s transition to a market economy has swept away many restrictions in people’s lives. But of all the new freedoms the Chinese enjoy today — making money, owning a house, choosing a career — there is one that has become an unexpected burden: seeking a spouse. This may be a time of sexual and romantic liberation in China, but the solemn task of finding a husband or wife is proving to be a vexing proposition for rich and poor alike.

“The old family and social networks that people used to rely on for finding a husband or wife have fallen apart,” said James Farrer, an American sociologist whose book, “Opening Up,” looks at sex, dating and marriage in contemporary China. “There’s a huge sense of dislocation in China, and young people don’t know where to turn.”

… Demographic changes, too, are creating complications. Not only are many more Chinese women postponing marriage to pursue careers, but China’s gender gap — 118 boys are born for every 100 girls — has become one of the world’s widest, fueled in large part by the government’s restrictive one-child policy. By the end of this decade, Chinese researchers estimate, the country will have a surplus of 24 million unmarried men.

Without traditional family or social networks, many men and women have taken their searches online, where thousands of dating and marriage Web sites have sprung up in an industry that analysts predict will soon surpass $300 million annually. These sites cater mainly to China’s millions of white-collar workers. But intense competition, along with mistrust of potential mates’ online claims, has spurred a growing number of singles — rich and poor — to turn to more hands-on matchmaking services.

China’s matchmaking tradition stretches back more than 2,000 years, to the first imperial marriage broker in the late Zhou dynasty. The goal of matchmakers ever since has usually been to pair families of equal stature for the greater social good. Today, however, matchmaking has warped into a commercial free-for-all in which marriage is often viewed as an opportunity to leap up the social ladder or to proclaim one’s arrival at the top.

Single men have a hard time making the list if they don’t own a house or an apartment, which in cities like Beijing are extremely expensive. And despite the gender imbalance, Chinese women face intense pressure to be married before the age of 28, lest they be rejected and stigmatized as “leftover women.”

Dozens of high-end matchmaking services have sprung up in China in the last five years, charging big fees to find and to vet prospective spouses for wealthy clients. Their methods can turn into gaudy spectacle. One firm transported 200 would-be trophy wives to a resort town in southwestern China for the perusal of one powerful magnate. Another organized a caravan of BMWs for rich businessmen to find young wives in Sichuan Province. Diamond Love, among the largest love-hunting services, sponsored a matchmaking event in 2009 where 21 men each paid a $15,000 entrance fee.”
On the other hand, there was an article by David Barboza in the March 8, 2013 New York Times entitled, “In China, Checklist for a Home Seller: First, Get a Divorce.”  See entire article at

Barboza says, “Divorce filings shot up here and in other big cities across China this past week after rumors spread that one way to avoid the new 20 percent tax on profits from housing sales was to separate from a spouse, at least on paper.
The surge in divorce filings is the latest indication of how volatile an issue real estate has become in China in the past decade and how resistant people are to additional taxes.”

Perhaps these two trends will cancel each other out or perhaps all the people getting divorced will increase the supply of people to get married!

As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at CDM (272) 3/20/13


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Best and Worst States for Getting Divorced

I am aware that the states differ dramatically in the nature of divorces and have wondered which the best and worst states are.  As usual I goggled and found the following: The Best and Worst States for Getting Divorced by Joel Stonington and Alex McIntyre at
Following are excerpts from the article.
Bloomberg Rankings rated the 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia on the obstacles they pose to obtaining a divorce. These include court filing fees, mandated separation periods, residency requirements, waiting periods, and the minimum time required to complete the divorce process. Read on to see how states rank, from easiest to most difficult.”
New Hampshire (1)
Filing fee: $180*
Minimum processing time: 0 days*
Divorce rate: 9.9**
You can't stay in a hotel for one night and go home single the next, but getting divorced in New Hampshire is almost that easy. There's no minimum processing time or minimum residency. "Say you're both living in Massachusetts," said Cathryn Nunlist, associate professor of law at Vermont Law School. "You both move to New Hampshire. You can file the next day, not a problem. There is a requirement that you are a resident. You can establish residency just by crossing the border and staying there."

*All state data from state websites
**U.S. Census Bureau, number of persons divorcing annually among 1,000 men and women, aged 15 and over
Home State
Arizona (19)
Filing fee: $321
Minimum processing time: 150 days
Divorce rate: 11.4
In 1998, Arizona followed in Louisiana's footsteps and enacted what is known as covenant marriage, by which couples agree to premarital counseling and accept fewer options for divorce. Those who choose a covenant marriage must prove fault if there is no agreement about dissolving it.
Vermont (51)
Filing fee: $262.50
Minimum processing time: 450 days
Divorce rate: 10.6
It's hard to get divorced in Vermont. "When they come to me and say 'let's get divorced,' I say, 'let's do it in New Hampshire because that's the easier one," said Cathryn Nunlist, a professor at Vermont Law School. Nunlist practices divorce law and lives near the border of Vermont and New Hampshire. Couples must live apart during Vermont's six-month mandated separation time. A year of residency is required before a divorce can be granted, and then a three-month "decree nisi" period must pass before a judge's approval becomes absolute.
Entire list
·         New Hampshire (1)
·         Wyoming (2)
·         Alaska (3)
·         Idaho (4)
·         South Dakota (5)
·         Nevada (6)
·         Maine (7)
·         Tennessee (8)
·         Montana (9)
·         Missouri (10)
·         Iowa (11)
·         Connecticut (12)
·         Kansas (13)
·         North Dakota (14)
·         Washington (15)
·         New Mexico (16)
·         Massachusetts (17)
·         Oklahoma (18)
·         Arizona (19)
·         Alabama (20)
·         Hawaii (21)
·         Ohio (22)
·         Georgia (23)
·         Minnesota (24)
·         Colorado (25)
·         Mississippi (26)
·         Kentucky (27)
·         Delaware (28)
·         Utah (29)
·         Michigan (30)
·         Washington, D.C. (31)
·         Virginia (32)
·         Indiana (33)
·         Illinois (34)
·         Florida (35)
·         Texas (36)
·         West Virginia (37)
·         Louisiana (38)
·         Oregon (39)
·         Pennsylvania (40)
·         Wisconsin (41)
·         Maryland (42)
·         New Jersey (43)
·         North Carolina (44)
·         Nebraska (45)
·         New York (46)
·         California (47)
·         Arkansas (48)
·         South Carolina (49)
·         Rhode Island (50)
·         Vermont (51)
The ranking applies to no-fault divorces of couples with no minor children. All numbers are statutory minimums and do not reflect waivers or exceptions granted by the courts. The 50 states and District of Columbia accrue points based on the following variables:

Court filing fees (10 points).
Minimum separation period (20 points): This includes whether or not the state requires separation before divorce (5 points), the length of separation required (10 points) and the strictness of the terms of separation (5 points).
Minimum length of residency (20 points).
Minimum waiting period after filing for divorce (20 points).
Minimum number of days required for entire process, from start to finish (30 points).
Final score: For each variable, the state with the lowest value received zero points, while the state with the highest value received the maximum number of points. Remaining states were then awarded points on a percentile basis. States were ranked on total points, with a higher score indicating a more onerous divorce process.
Data providers: Bloomberg, U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, state bar associations, legislatures and judiciaries for each state and the District of Columbia
This is more of a procedural analysis.  It is also important to look at results.  For example alimony varies tremendously.  See my Monday, April 7, 2008 blog on Alimony Questions at
As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at CDM (271) 3/7/13