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Divorces Per 1k (Most Recent Year)

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Divorce Rates by Country 2024

Snapshot

  • The Maldives, with a divorce rate of 5.52 per 1000 people, leads the world in divorces, partly due to cultural factors and women's empowerment.

  • COVID-19 pandemic led to a global decrease in both marriage and divorce rates, with notable drops in countries like Slovenia and Hungary.

  • Countries with the lowest divorce rates, like Sri Lanka and Vietnam, may reflect legal difficulties or societal barriers rather than marital satisfaction.

Marriage is a sacrament that bonds two people together for life, creating a legal, cultural, and/or religious connection between them that impacts everything from their name and address to their future family. Marriage is a cultural universal, an institution so fundamental to the human experience that there are no known examples of a society that functions without it. People marry for many reasons, including love, companionship, the desire to build a family, financial stability, social status, and religious fulfillment, and in nearly every case the marriage is considered a watershed event in the participants’ lives.

Divorce and its causes

Sometimes, however, the bonds of marriage break. According to the United States' National Center for Health Statistics, approximately 4-5 million people get married every year in the U.S. ... and approximately 42-53% of those marriages eventually end in divorce.

Divorce has many possible causes, including infidelity, financial problems, loss of intimacy, substance abuse, domestic abuse, lack of commitment, moral or religious differences, and simply growing apart. Whatever the reason, divorce is not a uniquely American scenario. Divorce happens all over the world—in fact, it may be every bit as universal as marriage itself.

How to calculate divorce rate

Divorce rates can be calculated multiple ways, but one of the simplest methods utilizes census data. Dividing the number of divorces in a given year by total population yields the crude divorce rate. This metric is typically expressed as a number per 1000 people. For example, if 100,000 people lived in a nation and there were 500 divorces in a year, the divorce rate would be five divorces per 1,000 residents.

Top 10 Countries with the Highest Divorce Rates (annually, per 1000 people)*

*Data is most recent available per country. 2018-China; 2019-Cuba; all others 2020-21

According to data from the United Nations and other sources, the country with the highest divorce rate in the world in 2020 was the Maldives, which recorded 2984 divorces against a population of 540,544, resulting in a divorce rate of 5.52 per 1000 people. This is actually a notable step down from the country's widely publicized rate of 10.97 in 2002, which earned the country a Guinness World Record.

Why are divorces so frequent in the Maldives? One common explanation is that the island nation's citizens frown upon physical relations outside of marriage, but both marriages and divorces are quite easy to obtain, so they marry quickly and divorce with minimal complication if the relationship fails. What's more, a cultural shift is currently taking place in the Maldives, with women becoming more empowered and more able to fend for themselves financially, enabling them to leave marriages that aren't working.

The former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan endured the second-highest divorce rate in the world in 2020, with 4.6 divorces for every 1000 people. Close behind are Russia (3.9), Belgium (3.7), and Belarus (3.7). The United States lands in a four-way tie for spots 9-12 on the list, with an annual divorce rate of 2.7 per 1000 people. In the U.S., Nevada has the highest divorce rate of any state at 14%.

The effect of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic on divorce rates

The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020-21 had a remarkable impact on nearly every aspect of everyday life, including rates of marriage and divorce. Overall, marriage rates dropped significantly in 2020, largely due to pandemic-related lockdowns and restrictions on public gatherings. What's more, divorce rates also dropped significantly, from .2 to .4 points in most cases, in nearly every country in the world.

For example, Slovenia's divorce rate dropped from 1.2 in 2019 to .8 in 2020. Similarly, Hungary dropped from 1.8 to 1.5, Seychelles went from 1.9 to 1.7, and the Dominican Republic plummeted from 2.5 to 1.2. Oddly, Denmark, considered one of the top 10 countries to live in, reversed the trend and saw its divorce rate leap from 1.8 to 2.7 during the 2020 pandemic.

Top 10 Countries with the Lowest Divorce Rates (annually, per 1000 people)*

*Data is most recent available per country, typically between 2017-2020.

On the other side of the coin, several nations have quite low divorce rates. Based upon available data, the country with the lowest divorce rate in the world is Sri Lanka, with a divorce rate of 0.15 divorces per 1,000 residents. Vietnam and Guatemala have the next lowest rate at 0.2 divorces per every 1,000 residents. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Peru, and South Africa rank 4th through 6th, then a nine-way tie at .70/1000 creates a logjam that soaks up spots 7-15.

It should be noted that a low divorce rate does not necessarily mean that a country's citizens have blissful, thriving marriages. In some countries, divorces may be more difficult to legally obtain, or wives may be unable to leave a bad marriage because they fear for their safety, or for their children's safety, or because they lack the financial wherewithal (or societal opportunity) to support the family on their own. In fact, if one takes the top 6 countries with the lowest divorce rates and tracks their scores on the United Nations' 2019 Gender Inequality Index (GII), they rank as follows:

Gender Inequality Index (GII) of top 6 countries with the lowest divorce rates (out of 162 countries, lower GII is better):

  • Sri Lanka - .401 (90th place)
  • Guatemala - .479 (119th place)
  • Vietnam - .296 (65th place)
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines - not rated
  • Peru - .395 (87th place)
  • South Africa - .406 (93rd place)

By comparison, all but three of the top 13 countries with the highest divorce rates placed within the top 50 in terms of gender equality. In light of these data, it is important to resist drawing conclusions about married life in a given country based upon its divorce rate alone.

Divorce rate and its connection to marriage rate

In fact, divorce rate on its own cannot even give a clear idea of how frequent divorces are in a given country. This is because the divorce rate is a measure of divorces as a percentage of the total population, not in relation to the total number of marriages. Why does this matter? Because the United States' 2019's rate of 2.7 new divorces per 1000 people would be quite impressive if all 1000 of those people were married, but shockingly worrisome if only 50 out of 1000 were married. For that reason, divorce rates are often viewed alongside a country's overall marriage rate. They may even be combined to produce a rough marriage/divorce ratio or percentage.

For example, if one matches the United States' 2019's rate of 2.7 new divorces per 1000 people to the number of marriages that took place in 2019—6.1 per 1000 people—it works out to one new divorce for every 2.26 new marriages, a divorce percentage of just over 44%. These are arguably more insightful and relatable numbers than "2.7 divorces per 1000 people." Of course, even this calculation is not entirely precise—divorce rates should ideally be compared to the marriage rates from the year each dissolving marriage was initially created, not the current year. However, it is nonetheless a useful (and much easier to compute) ballpark estimate for times when more granular data is unavailable.

  • Crude divorce rates are the annual number of divorces per 1,000 mid-year population.
  • Rates presented in this table have been limited to those countries or areas having at least a total of 30 divorces in a given year.

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Country
Divorces Per 1k (Most Recent Year)
Divorces 2022
Divorces Per 1k 2022
Marriages 2022
Marriages per 1k 2022
Divorces 2021
Divorces Per 1k 2021
Marriages 2021
Marriages per 1k 2021
Divorces 2020
Divorces Per 1k 2020
Marriages 2020
Marriages per 1k 2020
Divorces 2019
Divorces Per 1k 2019
Marriages 2019
Marriages per 1k 2019
Divorces 2018
Divorces Per 1k 2018
Marriages 2018
Marriages per 1k 2018
Guam4.37204.31,0566.35723.41,2517.5
Georgia3.814,0983.826,0487.110,6542.923,1556.27,6432.116,3594.411,205323,2856.310,2882.823,2026.2
Belarus3.757,9016.334,3863.759,6496.435,1443.750,3845.434,4703.762,7446.733,1523.560,7146.4
Moldova3.79,5653.718,15779,8973.820,2687.88,7933.315,5395.910,736420,3017.610,721420,3997.5
Latvia2.95,4072.911,8486.34,6432.511,2285.95,2062.710,7025.65,9713.112,8616.75,9673.113,0586.8
Dominican Republic2.728,6452.745,6124.328,6942.745,2924.312,5531.235,1043.426,1152.551,938524,7722.450,0674.9
Greenland2.71512.728551312.32945.21362.43075.41212.23315.91352.42895.2
Puerto Rico2.68,4542.68,4532.612,73249,644314,0914.4
Lithuania2.67,3952.616,0165.77,8222.816,79567,5442.715,2995.58,6833.119,50278,6403.119,7347
Cyprus2.62,3082.67,84692,1142.46,7777.8
Costa Rica2.513,2362.522,9204.414,5432.824,3524.711,7852.318,8523.714,0092.822,6774.511,0032.223,6034.7
Egypt2.4243,5832.4880,0418.6222,0362.2876,0158.7225,9292.3927,8449.4211,5542.2887,3159.1
Iran2.4201,6632.4568,9306.8183,1932.2556,7316.7174,8312.1530,2256.4175,6142.1550,5656.7
United States2.3746,9712.32,015,6036.1782,0382.42,132,8536.5
Kazakhstan2.344,5172.3128,3596.548,2392.5140,2567.448,0022.6128,8396.959,7963.2139,5047.554,7973137,7977.5
Sweden2.347,8834.623,6472.338,8953.725,6192.537,5913.625,4072.548,4814.724,9582.550,7965
Australia2.256,2442.289,1643.549,5101.978,9893.148,5821.9113,8154.549,6742119,1884.8
Denmark2.233,0545.612,8862.227,6434.715,6512.728,5384.910,5301.830,6355.315,0342.632,5255.6
Turkey2.1180,9542.1175,7792.1561,7106.7136,5701.6488,3355.9156,5871.9542,3146.6NaN1.8554,3896.8
Liechtenstein2.1822.12155.5992.62265.9741.92426.3
Czech Republic221,107246,7784.521,734245,4154.224,1412.354,8705.124,3132.354,4705.1
Switzerland214,20140,93817,159236,4104.216,2101.935,1604.116,885238,9744.516,5421.940,7164.8
Finland211,370221,942412,1662.219,5793.513,4782.422,082413,1052.420,1203.712,9452.421,9214
Kuwait28,307213,6563.28,0411.916,3933.85,9321.313,0712.97,8881.813,8863.17,8691.914,4003.4
Mauritius22,46229,5587.62,1101.78,1866.51,9951.66,9295.52,1741.79,7097.72,4251.910,0347.9
Singapore1.929,3897.27,6741.928,3297.16,7081.722,6515.67,3301.825,4346.36,9901.827,0076.8
Palestine1.99,7941.945,0188.68,0061.641,2218.18,5511.744,3208.98,5091.843,5159
Estonia1.92,5461.97,2005.42,5541.96,3964.82,5551.96,0934.62,7902.16,7015.13,1992.46,5735
Luxembourg1.91,2431.92,4753.81,4002.21,94531,4472.31,8032.91,9063.12,1433.51,23021,8983.1
Iceland1.96881.91,850571922,0755.86641.92,0925.9
Andorra1.93494.41491.93554.67912262.91331.73254.31141.52933.9
Bermuda1.91211.93134.91041.62483.91231.938661101.74737.4
South Korea1.893,2321.8191,6903.7101,6732192,5073.8106,5002.1213,5024.2110,8312.2239,1594.7108,6842.1257,6225
Spain1.886,8511.83.177,2001.61.991,6451.93.595,25423.5
Hungary1.817,6951.863,9676.618,0921.972,0307.414,9791.567,0956.917,6001.865,2686.716,9521.750,8285.2
Kyrgyzstan1.812,2131.86.812,0371.87.69,1281.4610,9921.77.710,4341.77.8
United Kingdom1.7113,5051.7103,5921.585,7701.3108,4211.6219,8503.391,2991.4234,7953.5
Belgium1.719,3471.748,4824.222,1721.940,8453.521,3001.832,7792.822,435244,2703.823,135245,0593.9
Jordan1.719,3051.763,8345.620,4161.875,3606.817,1441.667,3896.219,2411.867,6966.420,279270,7346.9
Azerbaijan1.761,9396.117,1911.756,3145.614,6281.435,3483.517,1481.763,8696.414,8571.562,4846.3
Portugal1.736,9523.617,2791.729,0572.817,2951.718,9021.820,421233,2723.220,345234,6373.4
Israel1.716,3001.751,6055.515,3071.739,9844.315,9921.848,0565.315,6051.849,4105.6
Germany1.6137,3531.6390,7434.6142,7511.7357,7854.3143,8011.7373,3044.5149,0101.8416,3245148,0661.8449,4665.4
Poland1.660,1621.6155,8174.160,6871.6168,3244.451,1641.3145,0453.865,3411.7183,3714.862,8431.7192,4435.1
Cuba1.618,2421.641,1933.722,003235,2463.232,9092.960,1535.430,4432.758,0705.2
Austria1.613,9971.647,4825.314,5101.641,1114.614,8701.740,9184.616,3191.846,0345.216,3041.846,4685.3
Macau1.61,1061.62,72741,3151.93,2774.81,3191.92,75441,4352.13,7245.51,5442.33,8425.8
Japan1.5184,3841.5501,1384193,2531.5525,5074.2208,4961.6599,0074.7208,3331.6586,4814.6
Sudan1.559,3391.5180,5634.6
Netherlands1.570,608425,9621.556,4193.228,9651.750,2332.930,0411.763,5653.730,7291.864,3153.7
Slovakia1.58,1801.529,1725.48,1311.526,3504.88,2951.523,7534.49,4661.729,6645.49,5601.831,1775.7
Norway1.58,2041.520,7693.88,8931.616,05039,8251.817,6993.310,2271.921,410410,1621.922,5784.3
Armenia1.54,5251.516,7955.74,4341.517,1655.83,1551.112,1794.13,8801.315,5615.33,8201.314,8225
Seychelles1.51521.51,55015.61671.71,25012.71891.93,07831.51661.73,13132.4
San Marino1.51221183.4531.51153.31564.51514.4
Italy1.483,1921.4180,4163.166,6621.196,8411.685,3491.4184,0883.188,4581.5195,7783.3
Uzbekistan1.448,7331.4296,6898.339,3491.1305,2118.728,2330.8296,7518.631,3890.9310,8999.332,3261311,3799.4
Tajikistan1.412,4691.480,2938.810,9761.282,6479.3
Serbia1.49,8131.432,8214.89,7901.432,7574.88,6871.323,5993.410,8991.635,5705.19,9951.436,3215.2
Bulgaria1.49,5251.426,0133.810,0211.526,6203.99,0151.322,1723.210,8591.629,1984.210,5961.528,9614.1
Faroe Islands1.4751.42454.5671.32434.6751.42344.5751.42895.6591.22855.6
Mexico1.3166,7661.3507,0523.9149,6751.2453,0853.592,7390.7335,5632.6160,1071.3504,9234156,5561.2501,2984
Malaysia1.343,9341.3214,9436.647,2721.5186,2975.756,6241.7203,6616.350,8621.6206,3526.4
Mongolia1.34,5531.317,5745.13,391116,1184.83,316114,2524.34,2621.320,0436.14,2011.321,0206.6
Romania1.223,2891.2118,3006.227,0241.4114,207622,7851.281,3434.230,1971.6128,6106.630,8571.6143,2927.4
New Zealand1.27,59318,8586,3721.215,6573.17,7071.516,7793.38,3881.719,0713.87,4551.520,9494.3
Panama1.25,0571.212,83533,1070.76,1531.44,5581.110,8582.64,5581.111,1122.7
Croatia1.24,8081.218,0744.75,1001.318,2034.75,1531.315,1963.85,9361.519,7614.96,1251.519,9214.9
Jamaica1.23,4021.216,7196.1
Canada1.142,9331.198,3552.656,9371.5146,1213.961,3441.7150,8584.1
Albania1.13,1131.119,70974,2671.517,4736.25,8602.122,4157.94,8461.723,1048.1
Montenegro1.16901.13,2915.37681.23,1965.17841.32,0263.38411.43,5235.78491.43,3215.3
American Samoa1.12912143.7651.117435911813
British Virgin Islands1.1431.11704.5421.21153.1541.51664.6802.41514.5
Slovenia12,14916,7683.22,3221.15,9162.81,7740.85,2142.52,4761.26,6723.22,3471.17,2563.5
Brunei143312,7836.36171.43,6648.36381.42,8316.35521.32,6536.1
North Macedonia0.912,88271,9640.913,3376.41,5690.810,27851,990113,8146.71,6200.813,4946.5
Bosnia and Herzegovina0.82,87117,8352,66914,9252,7900.818,9525.43,0910.919,9115.7
Ireland0.623,1734.617,2173.43,1640.69,5231.93,5450.720,3134.1NaNNaN21,0534.3
Malta0.63200.62,2764.42690.51,1572.23540.72,6745.33490.72,8315.8
Peru0.413,9940.474,5932.35,6820.244,4501.416,4850.584,3122.616,7420.591,8942.9
Vietnam0.222,1320.2500,0015.122,7620.2627,6606.425,7020.3699,2657.228,0760.3735,2927.7
Venezuela0.25,1260.245,8341.413,7340.466,2582.1
Brazil386,813932,502331,185757,179NaNNaN306,3761,043,947
Philippines444,231356,839240,775431,972449,169
Thailand146,159305,487110,942240,979121,011271,344128,514328,875127,265307,936
France150,5452.3218,6353.4228,4873.5
South Africa18,208106,49916,09789,33823,710129,59725,284131,240
Algeria65,96765,690
Argentina113,6642.547,8601.1123,3972.7124,2182.8
Ukraine121,381119,838138,005153,949
Saudi Arabia57,595150,11751,125137,91858,048162,722
Ivory Coast1,43130,554
Sri Lanka171,140162,628143,061163,378170,027
Chile53,2552.737,6471.961,5963.263,1873.4
Ecuador24,59555,34522,48656,92714,57339,06926,81957,06825,67060,849
Guinea32,714
Bolivia15,17231,06916,27048,580
Tunisia71,57265,63083,10516,75092,800
Greece40,7593.831,4752.955,0615.153,7975
United Arab Emirates5,4504,2134,5544,506
Hong Kong13,02616,69226,8993.616,02027,8633.721,15744,2475.920,32149,3316.6
El Salvador8,97229,219
Oman4,16015,4003,83819,2943,42618,7623,72818,2433,66220,005
Botswana6,5186,0975,489
Trinidad and Tobago7,2095.3
Bahrain1,9866,3691,7246,0262,0235,5241,9296,039
Reunion3,0043.51,9212.22,9113.42,9553.4
Guyana4,6233,4264,3524,008
Cape Verde1,5112.72,2404.12,3424.3
Guadeloupe9252.475721,0442.71,1873.1
Martinique1,05237482.11,0572.91,1003
Mayotte3371.12600.94811.83461.3
French Guiana6192.13501.26122.26602.4
French Polynesia1,0433.78623.11,1564.21,3815
New Caledonia5674989113.4919
Samoa1,1872,1342,828
Grenada179619
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines3473.1233162.9114824.4215244.7
Isle of Man2172.61301.62212.73474.2
Dominica6419086289147296
Cayman Islands6529.26349.85037.65168
Turks and Caicos Islands2275.14159.746411.2
Cook Islands33417.4814.41286.957028.270337.8
Niue71117
showing: 125 rows

Which country has the highest divorce rate?

Georgia has the highest divorce rate in the world.

Are divorce rates in the US among the highest in the world?

The US is tied for the 13th-highest divorce rate in the world, so its divorce rate is higher than most other countries.

Which country has the lowest divorce rate?

Slovenia has the lowest divorce rate in the world.

Frequently Asked Questions

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