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When your summer vacation leads to a divorce

If you and your spouse returned from vacation last month contemplating divorce, you're in good company. As it turns out, divorce tends to be cyclical and peaks in March and August.

Researchers at the University of Washington (UW) studied divorce patterns and discovered that seasonal rituals tend to trigger splits between spouses. Let's examine why August is one of those triggering times.

Researchers hypothesized that one reason may be that the underlying relationship fissures were already there but the couples ignored them in order to avoid disrupting the family's annual vacation.

Some couples may have held off in the hope that the brief respite from regular life might rekindle the embers of a dying fire. When that last gasp of hope fails, they turn to the courts to end their shared misery.

While there may never be a good time to divorce, many couples loathe to initiate the process over the autumn and winter holidays. They may decide that by filing right after they return from a late-summer vacation, the children will have a couple of months to adjust to what will be their new normal.

If you find your thoughts wandering to the benefits of filing for divorce, you need to have a solid plan in place before taking any action. Learn about your rights to custody and the division of community property before filing your petition for divorce in the Orange County courts.

Often it's better to be the plaintiff in a divorce case than the defendant. Make sure that you discuss your strategy with a California family law attorney.

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