A late-life divorce is one that occurs after the spouses have been together for many years. A marriage that has endured decades of togetherness between the parties may end suddenly when unresolvable conflicts arise, or its foundations may slowly erode over time and leave the partners ready to experience single life as they move into the later phases of their lives. In Wisconsin, long-term couples choose to end their marriage for many reasons.
A late-life divorce may be a complicated legal matter. That is because it is not uncommon for couples to accumulate wealth, assets, property, and other items of value over time. When those items and assets are jointly owned they must be assessed and divided through the property settlement process. The more property that a couple has the more difficult it may be to determine just which party should take particular parcels and items of wealth.
Additionally, long-term marriages that end in divorce can result in long-term or permanent alimony awards. If a person cannot support themselves after their marriage ends, their spouse may be required to provide them with spousal support throughout the remainder of their life. Agreeing to or establishing an appropriate alimony amount may be a challenge.
However, late-life divorces do not have to be hard. Some couples may choose to mediate their divorces, and in some situations late-life divorcees are spared negotiations over child support and custody as their children have grown up and are no longer dependents. It is important that all divorcing parties receive their own legal guidance so that they can adequately prepare for the legal challenges that may confront them, whether that leads to settlement talks or trial.