There were 32,900 petitions filed for divorce in the first quarter of 2009, a similar number to that in the first quarter of 2008. The number of decrees absolute granted fell to 28,800 in the first quarter of 2009 from the 32,200 in the first quarter of 2008.
Why is that?
It sounds odd, doesn't it for there to be less absolutes than petitions for divorce (requests for a divorce)? But it is due to the delay between the request and the absolute. More here. This means that the decree absolute numbers reflect applications for divorce, divorce petitions, started months before.
But mainly, less people are getting married so less are getting divorced!