Pennsylvania Ranks Among States With The Least Divorces

Fact Checked by Thomas Leary

Oh, Philadelphia freedom. No not the famous Elton John single that was released in 1975, but Thursday, April 14 is National Ex-Spouse’s Day across the nation. 

As couples communicate and disagree on a daily basis, each relationship tries to build on its foundation and build towards the future with children, a backyard and a solid career for each. As it turns out, Pennsylvanians are doing just that. 

PennStakes.com, your source for Pennsylvania online casinos, used data from Hyattsville, Maryland-based National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) to determine the states with the highest and lowest divorce rates per 1,000 women in the year 2021. 

Let's just say the Keystone State is rather fond of marriage. Here are the results.

States Ranked By Divorce Rate

Rank State Divorce Rate
1Nevada4.2
2Oklahoma3.8
3Wyoming3.7
T4Alabama3.6
T4Arkansas3.6
T6Florida3.4
T6Idaho3.4
T8Kentucky3.3
T8Mississippi3.3
T8Tennessee3.3
T8Utah3.3
12North Carolina3.2
T13Alaska3.1
T13Virginia3.1
15Colorado3.0
T16Missouri2.9
T16North Dakota2.9
T16Washington2.9
T16West Virginia2.9
T20Arizona2.7
T20Maine2.7
T20Oregon2.7
T20Rhode Island2.7
T24Delaware2.6
T24District of Columbia2.6
T24Nebraska2.6
T24New Hampshire2.6
T24Ohio2.6
T29Connecticut2.5
T29Montana2.5
T29South Dakota2.5
T32Pennsylvania2.4
T32South Carolina2.4
T34Iowa2.3
T34Michigan2.3
T34Vermont2.3
T37Georgia2.2
T37Louisiana2.2
T37New Jersey2.2
T37New York2.2
41Wisconsin2.1
42Kansas1.9
43Maryland1.6
44Texas1.4
45Illinois1.3
46Massachusetts1.0
* — NCHS data does not include divorce rates for California, Hawaii, Indiana, Minnesota, or New Mexico.

Although the NCHS data does not include divorce rates for five states - California, Hawaii, Indiana, Minnesota, New Mexico - Pennsylvania ranks No. 32 (tied with South Carolina) of 46 states at 2.4%, one of the lowest divorce rates in the country. 

Thirteen states are actually lower than Pennsylvania’s ranking, ranging from Iowa, Michigan and Vermont at 2.3% all the way down to Massachusetts (1%) as the least divorced state. 

For comparison, the top five states that rank the highest in divorce rate: 1-Nevada (4.2%), 2-Oklahoma (3.8%), 3-Wyoming (3.7%) and a tie at 4-Alabama and Arkansas (3.6%). 

Pennsylvania is an equitable distribution state, which means courts will attempt to distribute marital assets in a fair and equitable way, but sometimes this does not mean a “50-50” split. The state is also both a no-fault and fault-based state, meaning a couple can simply cite the marriage is irretrievably broken or several at-fault reasons can be brought on by either spouse such as adultery, cruelty, etc. 

Any debts acquired during a marriage are the responsibility of both parties, even if the other is responsible for racking up the debt in the household.

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Author

Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media (NJ.com) in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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