Divorce can be difficult at any age, but it may present certain challenges as individuals grow older. Divorces after 50 years old are referred to as gray divorces and they are becoming more typical for several reasons.
While each couple’s circumstances are unique, there are some factors that make gray divorce more common.
First, some couples are choosing to have children later in life. Their children may just be leaving their home by the time the couple is in their 50s and they may decide that is the time to pursue divorce. People are also living longer than they have in the past and may know that they don’t want to spend the remainder of their life with their spouse.
Also, it’s more common to have couples with two incomes, which may make one spouse less financially dependent on the other and able to move on after earning and investing their own money.
In addition to considering their income, there are other financial topics the couple may want to think about. They may need to divide their retirement assets, like 401ks and individual retirement accounts, determine whether they would lose access to employer-based health insurance benefits and the cost of securing health insurance on their own and the financial impact of the divorce on any children they are still supporting.
Outside of financial items, the couple will need to consider how they will navigate life separately, which includes evaluating family relationships, friendships and their work environment.
An experienced attorney can help with questions about gray divorce and explain its potential impact on their situation.