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Families in France in 2017, by family type

With a total number of nearly 7.5 million, the most common type of family in France in 2017 was composed of a couple with children. However, in France, like in other Western countries, family models have been through a variety of transformations in the past years.

Families in France

According to the source, if most children in France in 2017 were living with a couple but there were also more than two million children who were raised by single parents. More than 2.4 million of households in France that year were composed of a single-mother with children compared to 529,700 for a single-father with children. It seems like women tend to raise children alone more frequently than males. The percentage of underage children living with one parent was particularly high in overseas department in 2018. That year, 57.4 percent of minor children living in Martinique were raised by a single mother or a single father. With the increase of divorces, blended families also became more common. In 2016, 332.9 thousand children were living in a blended family.

The evolution of family structure

In France, mentalities are changing about family and raising children. In a survey from 2019, most of French respondents declared that companies and employers should make it easier for men to combine childcare with work. Fathers’ role is becoming more important today. Family structure is changing as people appear to marry later and meanwhile the number of divorces is rising. Since the 90’s the number of children born out-of-wedlock in France increased. In 2018, more than 60.3 children born in France were born out-of-wedlock, compared to 37.2 percent in 1994. On the other hand, more children are now living in joint physical custody with a blended family or a single-parent. In 2017, more than 32,000 divorces involved children born from the relationship.

Number of families in France in 2017, by family type

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Release date

June 2020



Survey time period


Supplementary notes

* Only children under 25 years old are taken into account.
The figures have been rounded.

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Statistics on "Families in France "

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