The number of divorces in the U.S. continues to climb each year, but for couples over age 50, the number is dramatically higher than ever before. According to the New York Times, there are more divorced Americans 50 and older than those who are widowed. In fact, divorce rates have climbed so high for this age range that there is even a new term for it: Gray Divorce. However, individuals that pursue divorce after age 50, especially those ending a long marriage, face a different set of challenges than individuals that divorce in their 20s, 30's or 40's. In today's blog post, we'll look at some of the most common challenges of divorce for individuals over the age of 50.
Difficulty Dividing Estate
Lengthy marriages that head towards divorce often have complex and lengthy battles over assets and possessions acquired during the marriage. If the estate is large with multiple real estate holdings, stocks, retirement accounts, and valuables, this can exponentially lengthen the time it takes to equitably divide the estate. In addition, divorce among seniors can significantly impact the division of retirement benefits, and also future Social Security benefits.
Delayed Retirement Plans
Many divorcing individuals over age 50 end up postponing or canceling retirement plans due to the need to supplement their income. Their older age and any time spent out of the workforce may make it more difficult to secure adequate employment. In addition, divorcing couples face the high cost of finding new housing and replacing assets lost in the divorce, furthering the need for regular income.
Higher Medical Costs
As Americans age, the cost of health insurance and medical care can rise considerably. A divorce will often result in one spouse getting dropped from the other spouse's health insurance coverage. If the divorce occurs before they are eligible for Medicare coverage, then replacing health insurance may be an expensive and lengthy process.
If you're considering divorce, you don't have to go through the journey alone. Individuals need quality legal representation to advocate for their rights, their children, income needs and an equitable division of property. Christiansen Law Firm partners with individuals to secure favorable outcomes and protect the rights of clients and their children. The Family Law attorneys of Christiansen Law Firm have extensive experience in divorce proceedings, and can ensure that you are able to quickly move on with life after the painful process of divorce. Contact the Christiansen Law Firm offices in Houston or San Antonio to schedule a free consultation, or go online for more information.