Changing Divorce Laws Essay

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Changing Divorce Laws In 1995, Statistics Canada data shows that 30% of marriages split (McGovern). Since the 1960’s, marriage and divorce have been undergoing profound changes which have altered the meaning of marriage, the chances of its ending in divorce and the circumstances attached to marriage. These changes have made it easier for couples to obtain a divorce due to the changing laws and changing morals of society. The changes include three new grounds needed to prove marital breakdown, such as your spouse committing adultery, your spouse causing mental or physical cruelty or a separation of a year it was previously three years. Divorce also impacts the family as a whole, not only the children but also the two parties…show more content…
Monogamy was out, ‘free love’ thrived, and divorce represented freedom. Enough people wanted divorce by the late 1960’s that the pressure was on to change the law. After long and bitter parliamentary debates, the federal Divorce Act was revised. Additional grounds for divorce included desertion, imprisonment, or separation for at least three years plus marital offences of physical and mental cruelty. The new law eliminated the need to appear in court in most cases – often the most personally humiliating experience in the older legal procedure. The law later changed again in 1985, where it eased off yet again, to allow divorces after only a year’s separation. The broad trend in Canada was to make divorce easier. It was accomplished by making it less fault-oriented where most divorce applications to the courts are no longer contested which eliminates the need for a formal court hearing where both parties testify and ask for different things. With “no fault” splits in place, the social stigma of divorce shrank. As more people divorced the stigma weakened further. The cycle continued while the divorce rate soared. In 1951, there had been only one divorce for every 24 marriages, by 1987, one couple divorced every two couples that married (McGovern). In 1993, there were 78 000 divorces across Canada, compared to about 11 000 in 1968 before the new divorce laws came into
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