Gray divorce is a term referring to people who are in their 50s and older and getting divorced. Among U.S. adults in this demographic, the divorce rate has roughly doubled since the 1990s. Around 6 people per 1,000 divorced individuals in 2015 were ages 65 or older. However, unlike with younger individuals, it can be much harder on older people to go through the same process.
There are only a couple of advantages to divorcing at a later age. One of the most important is children. Older individuals going through a divorce often have teenagers or full-grown adult children. This allows them to forgo the hassle of a custody battle and avoid the expense of a long legal struggle. Likewise, it may be possible for a couple who have spent decades together to negotiate the terms of a divorce in an amicable way.
The disadvantages to gray divorce are much more numerous. The biggest disadvantage comes from property division. When a couple divorces, they must split all property equitably, meaning as fairly as possible for both involved. However, this property also includes retirement plans, such as 401(k)s and individual retirement accounts. While previously they had intended to retire and share the profits throughout the rest of their lives, both individuals now only have half of that amount, and it is much harder to pay for rent or a mortgage without another person to share the financial burden.
Likewise, because these individuals tend to be nearer to retirement age, it can be hard for them to make up the difference. If they go back into the workforce, they need to work for many more years before they might be able to retire with a similar financial cushion as before. Also, it can be significantly harder for an older individual to find a job, even with federal protections barring companies from discriminating against potential employees on the basis of age.
If you and your spouse are thinking of getting a divorce when one or both of you are near or over the age of 50, let us assist. Our skilled Manchester divorce attorneys are familiar with the process and can help you and your spouse discuss the most relevant topics concerning a gray divorce. Sekella Law, PLLC is dedicated to helping our clients through some of the most difficult times of their lives. We provide our clients with the knowledge they require when they need to make tough decisions. Let us see how we can help you.
Contact us at (603) 686-7229 or fill out our online form to schedule a case consultation with us today.