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Kentucky ranks among top 5 in divorce rate

USA Today likes to make lists. The newspaper makes lists of everything, from beer to presidential tweets.

Recently, the publication eyed the divorce rate. It noted that Kentucky is tied with the fifth-highest divorce rate, while also noting that the overall divorce rate dropped from four of every 1,000 Americans in 2000 to 2.9 per 1,000 Americans in 2017.

Just the stats, please

Using data from the U.S. Census Bureau collected by 24/7 Wall St., USA Today reported that the marriage rate has also decreased: In 2000, 8.2 of every 1,000 Americans was married, while in 2017, that number had dropped to 6.9 of every 1,000.

In an attempt to find out where more people are getting divorced, the publication looked at the number of people age 15 and older who are married in each state. It then looked at those who are divorced, leaving out those who are remarried or whose divorce has not yet been completed.

This gives three statistics for each state: The percentage of the population that is married, the number of divorced people per 1,000 residents and the number of married people per 1,000 residents, both in 2017.

Ranking the states

The state with the lowest percentage of married population is Louisiana, at 43.6 percent. The highest is Utah, with 56.1 percent married.  Kentucky is nearly halfway, ranking No. 21 with 49.8 percent of the population married.

The states with the lowest and highest number of married people:

  • Louisiana – 43.6 percent
  • New York – 44.6 percent
  • Mississippi – 44.8 percent
  • New Mexico – 44.9 percent
  • Rhode Island – 45.1 percent


  • Utah – 56.1 percent
  • Idaho – 54.9 percent
  • Wyoming – 53.6 percent
  • Nebraska – 53.1 percent
  • Iowa – 52.8 percent

Meanwhile, Kentucky is tied for the fifth-highest divorce rate in the country – 3.7 per 1,000 residents.

The states with the lowest and highest divorce rate:

  • Louisiana and Illinois – 1.9 per 1,000 residents
  • Iowa – 2.0 per 1,000 residents
  • Massachusetts and Texas – 2.2 per 1,000 residents
  • Kansas and Wisconsin – 2.4 per 1,000 residents
  • North Dakota and Maryland – 2.5 per 1,000 residents


  • Nevada – 4.5 per 1,000 residents
  • Oklahoma – 4.1 per 1,000 residents
  • Wyoming – 4.0 per 1,000 residents
  • Idaho – 3.9 per 1,000 residents
  • Kentucky, Arkansas and Alabama – 3.7 per 1,000 residents

There are more than 1 million divorces in the U.S. each year. If you live in a state with a high number of divorces, it’s a good idea to have the backing of a qualified, experienced legal team to help you through a very difficult time.

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