Obsessively Compulsive

The Eurovision Song Contest is now over and we are all looking forward to the holidays. Some families are already on holiday and the rest are looking forward to the summer holiday traffic (not).

In England we see apparently a new generation of “Superdads” and today’s fathers are learning how to juggle everything: career, family, friends, and downtime. But how are other countries doing with working parents?


New international data from the OECD shows that the Netherlands has the lowest rate of working parents.

In Germany 16.5% of children grow up in families where both of their parents work, and even in the UK it is 24.8%. The highest rate is Slovenia with 77.4% followed by Portugal with 66.0 %. The country league table from the OECD is as follows:-

Slovenia: 77.4 %
Portugal: 66.0 %
Finland: 58%
Poland: 53%
France: 41.4%
Spain: 39.2 %
Italy: 32.4%
UK: 24.8 %
Austria: 20.8%
Germany: 16.5%
Switzerland: 8%
Netherland: 5.6%

International Divorce

In 2012, Divorce rates for 39 European countries have been reported to the UN. Russia had the highest reported divorce rate followed by Belarus, Latvia and Lithuania, Moldovia and Gibraltar.

The lowest rate was in Ireland, Montenegro, Macedonia, Serbia and Malta. Comparing the above table with the United Nations World Demographic report from January 2015 the table looks totally different. Portugal has the highest divorce rate within working parent families and Slovenia has the lowest:-

Portugal: 2.4
Finland: 2.4
France: 2
Spain: 2.2
Germany: 2.2
Switzerland: 2.2
Austria: 2
Netherland: 2.1
Poland: 1.7
Slovenia: 1.2
Italy: (not reported)
UK: (not reported)


Juggling job and child care for parents is difficult enough and recently a German Judge got even told of when she arranged Child Care by text during a Court hearing.

If the increase in numbers of working parents means that families in Europe have more income available to spend on their children and (maybe on holiday) and it slows down the Child Poverty Statistics more, then this should be welcomed. Child Poverty statistics show that between 1998/99 and 2012/13 the number of children living in families below the poverty line (defined as less than 60% of the median wage in 2010/11 before housing costs) fell from 35% of the child population to 19%.

However we can only hope that in the future children have enough quality time with their parents and children don’t have to use code words on social media (which 28% of online teens say they use to hide online conversations from their parents on a daily basis) to communicate with their parents.

Contact us

About the Author: Frank Arndt is one of the Founding Partners of Paradigm Family Law. After working over 13 years as Head of International Family Law at Stowe Family Law and being dual qualified as a Solicitor and Rechtsanwalt, Frank developed with James Thornton a tailored “bespoke fixed fee model” in Family Financial Proceedings.

No other firm in the UK offers this unique service. Frank and James believe that clients need to take control over their legal costs and the fixed fee model give them the opportunity. Let not the divorce costs control you, make sure you are the first to control the divorce costs.

If you have issues concerning holidays or would like to talk to one of our specialist family lawyers then please call us on 0845 6020422 or email [email protected]