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New year signals divorce proceedings for many couples

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The end of one year, and the beginning of another leads many people to resolve to be a better version of themselves and time for a fresh start.

"I've had this phone call before from a guy, who was in the middle of spending the holiday's, one afternoon with his in-laws and extended family on his wife's side and wanted to meet with me later that week," divorce attorney Patrick Copley said.

Unfortunately, for many of Copley’s cases, that fresh start often means going at it alone.

"It's kind of sad frankly, because of like a New Year's resolution type deal, they want to have a new me type approach to the year.  They'll call and say they want to end their marriage," Copley said.

Copley, like attorneys across the nation, says starting this first week of January his office will see an uptick in calls from people acting on their "out with the old, in with the new" approach.

"I think at the holiday's, people get out of their normal routines. They are spending more time with their spouse, in the house, maybe with the kids, maybe with the in-laws and raises a situation to where, things were festering for a long time and now they just want to kind of turn the page with a new year.  I've seen that quite a bit," he said.

While divorce itself is a topic people are reluctant to talk about

"It really is a sad thing for just about everybody," Copley said.

The stress of marriage and the holidays is something most understand, including Jim Jewell, who's about to celebrate his 30th wedding anniversary.

"The holidays are here, it's Christmas time, it should be better and it's not. Then all of a sudden January first comes, do you really want to kiss this person next year?  I do, it's my wife, yes, for 30 years but you know what I mean? Those kinds of things come up," Jewell said.

Copley says divorces can cost up to $20,000 depending on how long and drawn out the process is. His advice for couples is to make divorce your absolute last option.

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