The future trends in marital status of the older people

Stamatis Kalogirou, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)
Patrick Festy, Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED)
Michael Murphy, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

The great majority of the increase over the period 2000-2030 in the population aged 75+ is likely to be made up of married people, with divorced people forming the second largest group. These trends are pervasive across Europe. The implications are that older people with a spouse (who are, of course, primary care-givers in this age group) will increase much more quickly than those without for the next 30 years or so. Among those formerly married, the divorced will come to form an increasing proportion, rising from about 5% to about 25%, and this group, especially men, may have specific care needs. The higher rates of marriage that were experienced by those aged 75+ in 2030 when they were young adults (they were marrying around the 1960s) mean that the proportions never-married are particularly low, and lower than those who went before, and also those who will come after them.

Presented in Session 5: Future living conditions of elderly people in Europe