Drop in divorcees defaulting on maintenance

Drop in divorcees defaulting on maintenance

Fewer divorcees have been defaulting on maintenance payments here since landmark amendments were made to the Women's Charter three years ago.

Last year, just 19 people were jailed for failing to pay up, compared with 45 in 2011.

The number of court applications for enforcement orders compelling former spouses to maintain their ex-marital partners and children has also dropped from 1,900 in 2009 to 1,700 last year.

Divorce lawyers, however, say that the fall in the number of applications for enforcement orders could be due to fewer divorce cases here in recent years.

Department of Statistics figures show that the number of divorces and annulments fell by 4.8 per cent to 7,237 in 2012, the first drop in seven years.

This works out to a divorce rate of 7.1 per 1,000 married resident males aged 20 or above, and 6.7 per 1,000 married resident females.

In 2007, the divorce rates for men and womens were 7.7 and 7.4 respectively.

Figures for 2013 are due to be released later this year.

This article was published on April 16 in The Straits Times.

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