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Couples who married in 1986 and 1988 'most likely to divorce'

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According to the Marriage Foundation, which has used information from the Official for National Statistics (ONS), 44.4 per cent of couples who got married in 1986 and 1988 will end their relationship.

Couples who got married in these two years are more likely to divorce than those who got married in any other year.

The figures for 1991 follow closely behind, with 10.6 per cent of couples married in that year getting divorced within the first five years.

However, the Marriage Foundation highlighted that if a couple got married in 1986, and they are still together now, there is only a three per cent chance of them getting a divorce in the future.

Since the 1990s, a growing number of couples have decided to live together before getting married, and the recent trend is for couples to be older before they make a commitment, which is being cited as a major reason as to why less people get divorced today.

Harry Benson, from the Marriage Foundation, stated that in 2011 the average age for a bride was 30 and 32 for the groom, which is up from the 1980s figures of 23 and 25 respectively.

Mr Benson said: “Once couples get past ten years of marriage, divorce rates have changed remarkably little since the 1960s, in spite of all the social and economic changes.

“This says a lot for the consistency of married life once you get through those first difficult years.”

The divorce figure among newlyweds – those in the first five years of marriage – has fallen from the late 1980s onwards and has remained at a steady constant of 38 per cent to the present day.