Sometimes couples wait years to divorce. When they’re in their 50s or older, and their children are grown,they finally make the decision to move forward with their lives separately. Here are some ways that this decision can have a financial impact.
Anticipating Retirement After Divorce
Gray divorce happens at a time in life when you’re nearing the end of your income-earning years. You may be planning for retirement, or you may already be experiencing retirement on a fixed income. Late in life, there’s less time for you to recoup losses in earnings or retirement savings, so you may be more financially vulnerable than you would otherwise be.
It’s important to talk with your lawyer about your concerns. Your lawyer can help you plan for retirement by making sure you get the share of your retirement planning assets that you are due, including:
- Savings accounts
- Military retirement benefits
Gray Divorce Increases Household Expenses
Divorce also means that one household becomes two. So, the expenses associated with one household are typically doubled. You may find yourself paying outright for things that were formerly shared expenses. Or you may find yourself purchasing household items and furnishings for your new home. The world may seem much more expensive — especially if you acquired most of your basic household appliances years ago and haven’t had to shop for them recently.
Which Spouse Bears More Financial Risks in a Gray Divorce?
In many gray divorces, the economic impact hits one spouse harder than the other. This can be the case when one spouse stayed at home to raise children while the other built a career. The spouse who earned less is often financially disadvantaged. They may also earn less currently, and they have less history of income documented by the Social Security Administration.
If this is your situation, just “getting a job” isn’t going to fully remedy the financial inequities. You may be able to claim Social Security benefits from your ex-spouse if you were married for a long time. Alimony may be another consideration.
Let Us Guide You Through Your Gray Divorce
Despite the financial challenges of gray divorce, it’s important not to give up hope. An experienced attorney can guide you through the process and help protect your financial interests.
At Schneider Law Firm, P.C., our experienced family law attorneys can help you navigate complex divorce issues, including late-in-life divorce. Our lawyers are focused on providing clear guidance throughout every kind of divorce.