Gray divorces are becoming more common these days, and researchers are testing various theories about why this seems to be. Some say that the phenomenon is the result of people living longer or of women having more freedom and flexibility because of their earning power. Whatever the reason, the results are often the same. People in Pennsylvania going through a divorce past the age of 50 may have serious concerns about their futures after property division is complete.
Advisors recommend working closely with one’s attorney and financial planners because a person divorcing later in life may have more complicated assets and limited income than someone younger. Aside from the emotional upheaval of a gray divorce, the most urgent matter may be determining how one will retire once a couple’s nest egg has been divided. Perhaps more immediate than retirement may be commitments, like paying for a child’s wedding or college, or even ongoing medical issues. These things may need to be discussed and prioritized with a professional.
Understanding the value and burden of one’s assets is crucial. Some retirement funds come with tax implications, and a home may be more of a liability than an asset. Mature couples may have the unique element of having established an estate plan that a younger couple has not had time for. This estate plan will need to be reviewed in light of a divorce to make sure beneficiaries and trustees are still relevant.
Any divorce in Pennsylvania has its complications and frustrations, especially if one has children. However, a gray divorce may have more urgent financial matters to deal with, and this can make a person feel as if the future is bleak and uncertain. This does not have to be so. While a gray divorce may leave a person wondering how to get along in the future, having an experienced attorney will ensure that a person has a good foundation after property division is finalized.
Source: postbulletin.com, “Keeping some green in gray divorce”, Sarah Skidmore Sell, Sept. 24, 2016