Australian divorcees do comparably well financially

DIVORCEES in Australia are not hit quite so hard financially as those in the United States and four other developed nations, new research shows.

The Australian Institute of Family Studies data showed that six years after a separation, Australian women had the second best financial circumstances on average of the five countries compared.

It compared the long-term outcomes of divorce on couples in Australia, the US, Britain, Germany, Korea and Switzerland.

Researchers found the better finances of divorced women were the result of several factors, including government income support, higher workforce participation rates, child support and a "tendency to re-partner".

The analysis showed one year after a separation, women's household income fell sharply in all countries compared with men, but did recover six years later.

Co-researcher Professor Matthew Gray said Australian separated women had incomes 21% lower than non-separated women in similar circumstances.

"Meanwhile, men in that first year had an equivalised household income broadly the same as non-separated men," he said.

"But six years after separation, the income of separated Australian women recovered somewhat so that it was 12 per cent lower than comparable non-separated women.

"The income hit experienced by separated Australian women six years after separation was less than countries such as the US where it was 37% lower, Germany 23% lower and Britain 17% lower than comparable non-separated women."