The personal, financial and emotional stresses of divorce are never easy, regardless of age. For couples facing retirement, whose children have already left the home, the stakes can be even higher. Divorcing couples who are over the age of 50 have additional financial stresses compounded by retirement demands that are more costly for individuals than couples.
According to financial experts, individuals may pay 40 to 50 percent more than a married couple for the costs of retirement. For women who have been out of the labor force most of their marriage, it can be even more challenging to re-enter the job market and have an independent income.
Planning for retirement can feel overwhelming, even for couples who are stable and financially secure. Divorce can be costly, combined with the division of assets and household goods. For couples who divorce post-50, it can be even more difficult to recover.
According to a study published by the National Center for Marriage and Family Research, one in four people who divorced in 2010 was over 50. Researchers have been amassing increasing evidence that there is a greater tendency for couples to divorce when they are older. According to the study, baby boomers have been the first generation to file divorce and remarry in such large numbers into adulthood. These numbers continue to rise as boomers enter their 50s, 60s, and 70s.
Divorce is becoming more acceptable for older adults for a number of reasons. For one, second and third marriages have always been more likely to end in divorce. Older adults are also growing more accepting as they see their friends and other family members file for divorce in their golden years. More women working means that they are less likely to stay in a dependent marriage when they can survive on their own. With longer lifespans than generations ago, Americans also have more time where they can see their marriages find a natural end.
As a growing number of persons who are approaching retirement or in retirement head for divorce, financial planning is key. Younger couples may not worry about dividing retirement plans and real estate, but these issues are critical for older adults. When a couple has significant debt, the division can be even more complicated. Unfortunately, it is often the dependent spouse who faces the most challenges, according to analysts. Employed and divorcing will still amount to benefits upon retirement, where a divorcing spouse has to develop a new plan and fight for benefits through a divorce settlement.
Whether you are facing retirement and considering divorce or you are already retired and are considering the benefits of a divorce, it is important to know your rights and options.
An experienced attorney can help you identify your priorities, fight for your legal security and financial interests and help you navigate the family law court system. Even if you are concerned about not having retirement savings, a strategic approach can help you tackle your financial future.
Our Birmingham divorce attorneys help clients from all walks of life achieve independence and security in the divorce process.
If you are seeking a divorce in Birmingham, contact Family Law Attorney Steven Eversole at (866) 831-5292.