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Are Pennsylvania couples waiting for January to file for divorce?

By this time of year, many Pennsylvania couples that are heading for divorce make the conscious decision to put it off until January. Not many couples want to ruin Christmas for friends and family with the announcement of an impending divorce. Notwithstanding the desire to avoid negative connotations for the holidays, there are three popular reasons couples wait for the new year.

January is viewed as a time of renewal when everyone has the chance to begin again. Practically, starting a divorce shortly after New Years could guarantee the divorce will be final before the holidays roll around again. This could give everyone involved, including the children, time to adjust to new circumstances.

Financially, January makes sense for many people. The end of one year and beginning of the next provides a clear delineation for financial reasons. Many people receive end of year account statements that can help with property division. In addition, any year-end bonuses can be counted in the couple's assets.

Tax considerations also influence a couple's choice to end their marriage after the new year. It is often easier to devise a tax plan when the prior year is closed out for accounting purposes. Completing the divorce as early in the year as possible may also allow the parties the opportunity to maximize their tax deductions for that year.

It is rarely ever a good time to announce a Pennsylvania divorce. However, there may be a time that is strategic for the parties' financial goals. For this and other more emotional reasons, January has become one of the most popular months of the year to file for divorce.

Source: Huffington Post, Three Reasons Why January May Be the Best Time to File for Divorce, Bari Zell Weinberger, Dec. 11, 2013

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