The complexities of divorcing later in life

On Behalf of | Jun 10, 2024 | Divorce, Family Law

As couples grow older, they may find that their lives are heading in different directions, and choosing to separate might be the best choice for both. This trend, often called “gray divorce,” is becoming more common among those over 50. Although it might seem simple if both parties agree, ending a marriage later in life can be complicated.

Older couples may face greater financial challenges.

First, it is crucial to understand that getting a divorce when you are older brings unique financial challenges. Couples who have been together for a long time tend to have shared assets like retirement savings, a family home or other big investments. Divorce can also cause a significant drop in household income – as much as 40 percent in some cases. Figuring out who gets what requires detailed planning and often, advice from professionals.

For a smoother process, both people should be open about their finances. Being honest about what you have ensures that everyone knows what is there, which helps divide things fairly. Talking to financial advisors who know about divorce can also give a clearer view of what finances might look like after the divorce.

Getting legal help is also key in managing the financial aspects of a divorce. An experienced divorce lawyer can provide crucial help throughout the process, making sure property division gives each spouse their fair share. They can also help you explore options like mediation that offer you the chance to negotiate with your spouse rather than leaving property division up to the courts.

Gray divorce can have a significant emotional impact.

Older people should also carefully consider the emotional side of gray divorce. Even if both people agree on the divorce, it can be hard to think about a future apart after being together for so long. You may want to seek support through counseling, support groups, or friends and family.

Gray divorce can affect the whole family, including adult children. Having open and honest discussions about why the divorce is happening and what the future may look like is important for keeping family relationships healthy.

While gray divorce may seem straightforward if both parties agree, you should still be prepared to address the complexities head-on. With clear communication, professional advice and emotional support, you can start a new chapter of your life with respect and peace.