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Families in America growing by 66 percent due to divorce

Divorce has caused families in America to grow by 66 percent, according to new data released by a professor from the University of Massachusetts Boston. You might be asking why. The simple answer is that divorce leads to blended families due to second, third and subsequent marriages. This causes the families to grow in members, sometimes so large that it's too difficult to keep up with names at holiday gatherings.

The data has found that nearly one-third of households in the United States led by adults under the age of 55 are home to at least one stepparent. The same study found that couples older than 55 who have adult children have a stepchild 33 percent of the time.

The study conducted includes unmarried and married co-habiting couples. When the researchers counted stepchildren for American couples with adult children, families increased by 66 percent. As divorce and separation continue to increase, so too does the size of the American family. The divorce rate for older Americans has doubled over the past 20 years.

Researchers from Bowling Green State University found that nearly 30 percent of people 50 or older had been married more than once. The same study discovered that close to 40 percent of older Americans who have children are involved in stepfamilies.

Confusion and questions arise as these families continue to expand. Many people don't know what their obligations are in regards to their stepfamily members. This includes taking vacations, hosting holiday gatherings and even caring for aging stepparents.

Headed for divorce in Canton? An experienced family law attorney can review your situation and provide guidance, so you can begin the divorce process as soon as possible.

Source: Bloomberg, "Divorce Is Making American Families 66% Bigger," Dec. 18, 2017

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