Gray divorces are becoming more common.
Reasons for Gray Divorces
A long marriage does not necessarily make for a happy one. Of all age groups today, couples over the age of 50 are divorcing at higher rates than any other. These cases are known as gray divorces, and they happen for many different reasons.
Many couples choose during the marriage to have children later in life. Those kids then do not leave the home until the parents are in their 50s. The empty nest stage is a time when many people think about their life and what they want out of it. For some, this does not include staying married to their spouse. People in their 50s are also often fairly self-sufficient, as each person earns their own income. That income removes one of the biggest obstacles in the past, which was dividing one income.
There are certainly many reasons people divorce in their 50s. When this is the case, it is important that certain factors are taken into consideration.
Your Income May Be Different
The income you earn now may be very different from when you first got married. Perhaps you worked your way up the corporate ladder and are now an executive. On the other hand, perhaps your skills are no longer in demand and so, you make less than what you once did. There are many ways the income of you or your spouse may differ significantly now than it did years ago. It is important to consider this before pursuing or waiving your right to spousal support.
You and your spouse may have both accumulated significant retirement savings. These savings are subject to division during the divorce process, and you should know how much you stand to lose or gain. The more retirement accounts you have, the more complex the case can become. It is important to work with a lawyer who can advise on how to minimize the tax implications associated with these.
Health Insurance Issues
If you do not qualify for health insurance, it will become very difficult to manage your healthcare after divorce. Being far from retirement age, and therefore Medicare benefits, can only make this more challenging. It is important to speak to a lawyer who can advise on whether the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) or the Affordable Care Act can help.
Children will Still Feel the Impact
By the time a couple is in their 50s, any children they have together are usually adults. This may seem like it will make things easier. It is important to remember that even adult children will feel the impact of a divorce. Be there for them just as you would if they were younger.
Getting Divorced at 50? Our Family Lawyer in South Carolina Can Help with Your Gray Divorce
At The Peck Law Firm, our South Carolina family lawyer can advise on all the unique challenges a gray divorce will involve and help you overcome them. Call us today at 843-631-7117 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.