Longer Hours at Work Doesn't Lead to Higher Risk of Divorce

Updated: Oct 17

According to an article in today’s The Australian, couples in which men are working long hours are no more likely to divorce than those in which males are working the usual 40-hour work week. Conversely, those extra hours may just be the extra insurance to those marriages.

A new study co-authored by Melbourne Institute economics professor Mark Wooden finds that men in Australia are less likely to divorce when working between 40 and 50 hours a week. Beyond this number of hours, the risk of divorce increases but not as much as for men working 35 to 40 hours per week, notes the study. The optimal range, according to Professor Wooden, seems to be between 41 and 49 hours per week.

An article “Families, Income and Jobs” by Wooden was published in yesterday’s Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia survey, focusing on families between 2002 and 2006. Interestingly, the Australian-government commissioned HILDA report also indicated Australians to be heavy credit-card users but as a form of payment in responsibly managing their credit. According to the report, the majority of Australians pay off their credit card balance in full each month while only 16% say they seldom or never pay off the full balance monthly, and the mean net worth of the Australian family in 2006 was $665,000.

Overall, researchers noted that the number of work hours was merely just one of many possible factors that could contribute to any divorce. Professor Wooden noted that recent studies in the U.S. and The Netherlands suggest the divorce probability decreases with the number of hours worked by the male.

With both the continuing recession still hitting families hard and often both partners in couples working longer hours, some couples are choosing to compromise on or put off divorce. However, bringing home the ‘bacon’ doesn’t have to mean bringing on divorce. Don’t let these tough times force you to live beyond your means or contemplate even bankruptcy. My San Jose divorce lawyer offices can help you assess your divorce situation and solutions. My San Jose property division lawyer offices can help answer questions about division of assets as well.

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