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Commerce Department’s U.S. Census Bureau Reports 55 Percent of Americans Have Married Once in their Lifetimes

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Wedding Rings (credit: firemedic58 from Flickr)

A new U.S. Census Bureau report released today shows that among all people 15 years and older in the United States in 2009, 55 percent had been married once and 30 percent had never married. At the same time, 15 percent of Americans had married more than once, including 12 percent who had married twice and 3 percent who had married three or more times.

The findings come from a new report, Number, Timing, and Duration of Marriages and Divorces: 2009, which uses data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation to look at topics such as changes in the age at marriage, divorce and remarriage over the years, how long first marriages last, people who have been married multiple times, those who have been divorced or experienced other marital events, and the percentage of currently married couples that include spouses who are both in their first marriage.

More than half of currently married couples had been married for at least 15 years as of 2009, with 35 percent having reached their 25th wedding anniversary and 6 percent having passed their golden wedding anniversary, marking 50 years of marriage. In comparison to figures from 1996, these percentages were 1-2 percentage points higher, reflecting the leveling of divorce rates and increases in life expectancy.

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