California residents may believe that divorce is more common among younger couples, and that those marriages that have reached the 20 year mark or beyond are likely to go ’till death do us part.’ Recent research suggests, however, that older adults are filing for divorce at ever-increasing rates. The Wall Street Journal recently reported the results of one study that claims that one of every four individuals who divorce is over the age of 50.
The reasons that prompt older people to seek divorce can be the same as younger couples face, such as infidelity or money issues. However, older adults may also become discontent with their partners following changes associated with retirement or the absence of children in the home. Regardless of the reasons why older people choose to dissolve their partnership, they should be aware that their choices during the negotiation process could bring more harm to their financial standing than those made by younger couples.
Older adults simply have less time to recover from serious financial setbacks, especially those who have already retired and would face reentry into a weakened job market. In addition, many older Americans have health concerns that make issues surrounding health insurance a top priority. When both spouses rely on insurance provided by the employment of one spouse, a loss of coverage is likely for the non-employee following a divorce. The cost of obtaining a new policy can be much greater for older individuals, especially those with preexisting conditions.
The division of assets can also be more complicated for older couples in California, especially when retirement income and investments are at play. The most important thing to keep in mind is that the choices made during the divorce process will have lasting ramifications, making it imperative to make informed decisions. In many cases, older couples can benefit from obtaining informed counsel that can help them navigate the many decisions that are involved in dissolving a long-term marriage.
Source: clickorlando.com, “Divorce rates rising among older people,” Oct. 29, 2012