Are you over the age of 50 and contemplating divorce from your spouse? If so, you are not alone. According to Kiplinger, divorce rates have doubled for senior citizens over the past 25 years while in other age groups, they have remained fairly steady. Thirty years ago, people over age 50 represented less than 10% of all people who got divorced. Today, 25% of people who get divorced are seniors.
Whatever your reasons for wanting to get divorced late in life, there are financial matters that you have to take into consideration during the proceedings.
The Family Home
It may be possible for either your or your spouse to keep the house. However, you will be responsible for paying taxes and utilities, as well as expenses associated with upkeep. If you keep the family home, you may end up becoming house-poor. Selling the house following a valuation and splitting the money may be a more reasonable solution for both of you.
If the understanding during your marriage was that you were to benefit from your spouse’s retirement plan, you can still expect to receive a portion of it as part of your divorce settlement. Dividing retirement savings in divorce is a complicated process, but each spouse usually receives half of the funds.
The court awards alimony on a case-by-case basis. While it is not certain that you will receive alimony, your chances are better when you divorce late in life. Courts usually give the length of the marriage a lot of weight when deciding whether to award alimony and in what amount.