The baby boomer divorce rate is setting new records. Americans over 50 are twice as likely to get divorced as people of that age were 20 years ago. These so-called “gray divorces” carry their own inherent challenges that differ from divorces involving younger couples.
Florida Child support and custody are typically not a main focus in gray divorces. The bigger issue is equitable division of assets and liabilities. Older couples have had more time to accumulate both holdings and debt. Dividing these fairly is made more critical by the fact that these individuals are either retired or close to retirement and therefore have a more limited timeframe to replenish their retirement and investment accounts. Divorcing later in life carries the risk of increased long-term financial instability for both parties. Therefore, it is critical that their divorce plan is well thought out and fair.
The financial priority for older couples going through divorce is how they are going to fund their retirements. Understanding how assets such as 401(k)s, IRAs, and pensions are divided between spouses is critical and underscores the important of engaging an experienced family law attorney.
Advanced age can also mean that there is more sentimental value placed on items. This can make property division difficult. A prime example is the marital home. While it is likely difficult to part with a home they have shared for many years, selling the house is often necessary to ensure an equitable split of assets. It is essential that couples don’t let emotions get in the way of prudent financial decisions and remain committed to compromise.
The subject of alimony is also an issue. In most states, long term alimony only lasts until a spouse dies or the receiving spouse remarries or enters into a supportive relationship. Therefore, collecting proceeds from a life insurance account may be a more preferable option.
Health insurance can present another problem. Obtaining health insurance beyond a certain age can be challenging, particularly if an individual has existing medical conditions. Those who were covered by their spouse’s health plan may have to look elsewhere for coverage.
The above represent only a few of the myriad of challenges that you need to know about divorce involving couples over 50 years old. Engaging an experienced family law attorney will help guarantee that you fully understand and address every aspect of your divorce.