More Kiwis opting for marriage 05 May 2009

More Kiwis are getting hitched and marriages appear to be lasting longer, according to new data released today. Statistics New Zealand figures show there were 21,900 marriages registered to Kiwi residents in 2008, compared with 21,500 in 2007. Government Statistician Geoff Bascand said the increase was due to more first marriages – up from 14,400 to 14,800. The number of remarriages remained at 7,100, the same as in 2007.

Analysis of the department’s divorce and marriage statistics also showed one-third of New Zealanders who married in 1983 had divorced before their silver wedding anniversary. Around 9,700 divorces were granted by the Family Court in 2008 – slightly below the annual average of 10,000 for the last decade. Half of marriages dissolved in 2008 lasted 13.4 years or more, compared with 12.6 years for marriages dissolved in 1998. The median age at divorce in 2008 was 44.5 years for men and 41.9 years for women.