These Are the 9 States With the Highest Divorce Rates

Which state has the highest divorce rate? It's not looking good, Southerners.

hands of white woman who is about to taking off her wedding ring.
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Of course, the circumstances that lead to a couple getting divorced are unique and specific to them. However, there are some factors that can play into your likelihood of getting divorced: your financial situation, the age at which you got married, and apparently, even the state you live in. Using the latest 2018 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we gathered the nine states with the highest divorce rates in America, counting down to the state where divorce is most common. (Note: Rates are calculated per 1,000 total population.) If you're happily married and living in any of these states, we applaud you!

Florida

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Divorce rate: 3.6

Financial struggles are often a catalyst for divorce and Florida is one of the worst states when it comes to pay: According to a 2019 study from Business.org, Floridians need to work 84.5 hours a week to afford a one-bedroom apartment. So it's no surprise to see the Sunshine State on this list with a 3.6 divorce rate.

Alaska

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Divorce rate: 3.7

Perhaps the reason why splitting up is so common in Alaska—where the divorce rate is 3.7—is because it's quite easy to get a divorce in the state, CheatSheet notes. There are no minimum residency-duration requirements for the couple (though one spouse must be a resident) and it takes just 30 days to process and only costs $150 to file. Plus, the state divides property equitably and that includes pets: In 2017, Alaska amended its laws to become the first state to consider pets as children in a divorce.

Alabama

Prattville, Alabama/USA-June 12, 2019: A scenic view of people enjoying Autauga Creek and the Creekwalk area of Prattville during a beautiful golden sunset on a warm summer evening.
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Divorce rate: 3.7

The cards are stacked against Alabama, which also has a 3.7 divorce rate. A U.S. News and World Report study from 2019 put the state in 49th place overall, meaning it ranks low for health care, education, economy, infrastructure, opportunity, and fiscal stability, among other areas. No wonder it's hard to maintain a marriage in a state where everything's a struggle.

Wyoming

Bikers ride motorcycles in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, USA on a cloudy autumn day.
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Divorce rate: 3.8

With one of the worst job markets across all 50 states, according to a 2019 WalletHub study, it's tough to keep a union financially sound and strong in Wyoming, which is one of four states with a 3.8 divorce rate.

Utah

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Divorce rate: 3.8

Like Wyoming and two other states on this list, Utah also has a 3.8 divorce rate. Its marriage rates have been much higher than the average U.S. rates in the past three decades, which is at least one logical contributing factor to its high divorce rates. You can't have one without the other!

Oklahoma

U.S.A. Oklahoma, Elk City, shops on the Route 66
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Divorce rate: 3.8

Oklahoma is one state where weddings don't come cheap. According to a 2019 analysis from MagnifyMoney, the average salary in Oklahoma is just over $50,000 and the average wedding cost is more than $21,000, which means Oklahomans are spending 42 percent of their income on their weddings. And the financial stress that puts couples in might play a part in the 3.8 divorce rate. After all, a 2014 study published in the journal Social Science Research Network found that those whose weddings cost over $20,000 are 1.6 times likelier to divorce.

Idaho

View of Boise downtown and Idaho Capitol on a fine autumn morning as seen from Capitol Blvd, Boise, Idaho, USA
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Divorce rate: 3.8

Idaho's 3.8 divorce rate might have something to do with the fact that the state also has one of the highest marriage rates in the country, much like Utah. The more people you have married in your state, the higher your chances of divorce are.

Arkansas

Downtown Little Rock, Arkansas, around sunset.
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Divorce rate: 4.1

While Arkansans may be getting married earlier than the rest of the country, that doesn't mean those marriages are made to last. At 4.1, Arkansas has the second highest divorce rate in the U.S.

Nevada

LAS VEGAS, USA - JULY 14 : World famous Vegas Strip in Las Vegas, Nevada as seen at night on July 14, 2016 in Las Vegas, USA
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Divorce rate: 4.4

You'll notice that states with the highest divorce rates are predominately found in the Southern and Western regions of the country, and that holds true for Nevada, where the institution of marriage appears to be shakiest. Nevada has historically been one of the best places for a quickie marriage and a quickie divorce since the early 1900s, which is why it consistently lands in the top spot on this list. Plus, with Sin City being such a huge part of the state's culture, is it that hard to believe Nevada has the highest rate of divorce in the country?

Kali Coleman
Kali is an assistant editor at Best Life. Read more
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