Both crude and age-specific marriage and divorce rates are presented in this publication. Crude marriage and divorce rates reflect the number of people who marry or divorce within a specified reference year per 1,000 estimated resident population, as at 30 June of that year. Similarly, age-specific marriage and divorce rates reflect the number of people in a particular age group who marry or divorce within a specified reference year, per 1,000 estimated resident population in the same age group (as at 30 June).
When calculating age-specific divorce rates, there are a small number of persons aged under 16 years included in divorces data who were legally married overseas. Owing to the small numbers involved, these divorced persons are included in the 16-24 year age group when calculating rates, and the corresponding population denominator includes those aged 16-24 years.
For divorces, age-specific divorce rates are additionally presented per 1,000 married population, to offer a more accurate representation of divorce rates, as they provide an indication of the proportion of married people of a certain age who are granted divorce in a specific year. These data are only produced for years in which the Census of Population and Housing is conducted, as marital status of the Australian population is only available from the Census. In the Census, all people aged under 15 years are assumed not to be married. Consequently, these people are excluded from the married population.
In this publication, crude and age-specific marriage and divorce rates have been calculated using preliminary Estimated Resident Population (ERP) figures as at 30 June for the relevant year. Care should be taken when interpreting marriage and divorce rates by jurisdiction, as these counts are based on the state or territory in which the marriage or divorce was registered, rather than the jurisdiction of usual residence. ERP is based on the jurisdiction of usual residence.
Due to the large number of divorces granted in the Australian Capital Territory to usual residents of other states and territories, the crude divorce rate and age-specific divorce rates of the ACT are not representative and are not presented in this publication.