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Divorce peaks in March, Valentine's Day could be to blame

Internet search histories can reveal a lot about any given individual. Researchers hoping to discern certain patterns or behaviors often analyze the searches made on a search engine in a given period of time. As it turns out, the month of March is pretty popular for searching for all things divorce.

Illinois readers may remember a blog post from earlier this year that discussed the sudden spike in divorce filings that occurs at the beginning of the year ("Thinking of filing for divorce? You may be in good company"), which was posted on Jan. 15, 2015. Interest in filing for divorce does not suddenly wane at the end of January but continues to rise until filings reach a peak during March. Experts who evaluated the most popular search terms also found that searches for "divorce" peaked at the same time. 

So what makes March so popular? It could actually be linked to an annual event in February -- Valentine's Day. Although searches for divorce do peak in March, inquiries typically shoot up drastically shortly before Valentine's Day. Exactly why this particular holiday appears to fuel divorce inquiries and filings is unclear, but the trend was clearly noted from the years 2008 to 2011. Data from more recent years was not included in the analysis and may not have been available at the time.

Whether caused by Valentine's Day or the need for a bit of spring cleaning, March seems to be one of the most popular months to get the ball rolling on an important life change. It is possible that some of the people searching the Internet for divorce information never go on to actually file for any type of separation. However, with divorce filings in Illinois and across the United States reaching their peak during the month of March, Internet users who were initially seeking information may now be taking the first steps toward filing.

Source: kshb.com, "First comes Valentine's Day. Then comes divorce court? March is prime time for splitting up", Holly Edgell, March 19, 2015

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