Ariz. divorces spike on Valentine's

Feb. 14, 2008 at 4:10 PM
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PHOENIX, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- An analysis of divorces filed in Maricopa County, Ariz., has found the county averages 19 more divorces on Valentine's Day than any other day of the year.

The Arizona Republic analysis of divorces filed in Maricopa County Superior Court found couples keen to make their separations legal tend to target the romantic holiday, the newspaper reported Thursday.

Legal experts said the day is a popular target for divorce-seekers who want to add a touch of vindictiveness to their proceedings.

"It is a completely aggressive move with a specific thought in mind, and that is to upset the other party," said attorney Alexander Nirenstein of Scottsdale, Ariz. "We see that all the time. Anyone who is trying to peacefully dissolve their marriage would not do something like serve their spouse on Valentine's Day."

"They probably think, 'I don't want to have another Valentine's Day in an unhappy situation,'" said Family Court Presiding Judge Colleen McNally. "It's a very happy day unless you're not happy, and (Valentine's Day) might just be the last straw. If it was a real emotional decision, hopefully there'll be some time to calm down and reassess whether this is the direction to go."

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