If you are going through a divorce and are over the age of 50, you are not alone. In fact, this growing trend has earned its own name – “Gray Divorce.” According to the National Center for Family & Marriage Research, the divorce rate among adults over 50 doubled between the years 1990 and 2014, and tripled for those over 65 within the same timeframe. Divorce at this age, however, may be different in some ways compared to younger divorcing couples.
What Makes it Different?
Divorce is still divorce in the end, but the challenges the experience presents to those over 50 are arguably different. Such couples likely share a considerable amount of history together, making the prospect of suddenly embarking on a solo journey appear quite daunting. Their financial needs are also different, given that they are past their primary income-earning years. How can someone over 50 cope with the drastic changes sparked by divorce?
How to Deal with a Gray Divorce
- Seek Help: Do not try to get through this divorce alone. You are at a stage in life where you have a lot more to lose than someone who is 20 or 30 years old. Not only will you need a lawyer, but you may also need a financial adviser to help you understand your finances. Lastly, do not neglect your emotional needs. Going through a divorce at this age can be emotionally taxing, so reach join a support group or visit a therapist to help you through this time.
- Avoid Litigation: Spending time fighting in court can get ugly, costly, and take more time.
- Understand Your Current and Projected Finances: Fully understanding your financial situation before agreeing to a divorce settlement is crucial. How property and assets are divided can have major tax implications.
- Your Lifestyle May Have to Change: There is a good chance that, following the divorce, you may have to downsize your lifestyle or delay your retirement plans. Dealing with and accepting these changes now is better than having to deal with it later, because you do not want to find yourself in a situation where you have outlived your income.
- Consider Getting a Job: If you are unemployed or retired, you may have to consider getting a degree or training to get a decent job. Look for programs that require less time, but may potentially yield a higher income.
Iowa Divorce Attorneys
At the Law Offices of Mark R. Hinshaw, we provide reliable, trusted legal advice and counsel to our clients throughout the divorce process. If you are considering divorce, you can trust that our West Des Moines legal team will protect your interests and go the extra mile to exceed your expectations.
Call us today at (515) 200-7571.