Nowadays, people have a longer life expectancy. According to some experts, this has also brought up something unexpected: gray divorce. Baby boomers and seniors are choosing to separate from their spouses more than ever before, and the divorce rate among older individuals has increased in recent years.
Once both spouses reach 50 years old, their children have left the home in most cases. Couples can find that they have little in common and do not enjoy spending time together. On top of that, people are living longer, and previously strict gender roles are dissolving, providing people with more opportunities to grow and develop separate interests.
How is Gray Divorce Different?
Divorce is never an easy process, but when it happens later in life, the spouses may have more experience and maturity to handle the situation. Divorce mediation can make matters easier because it is less costly, less stressful, and does not take as long. The spouses can work with a mediator to resolve their issues, negotiate settlements, and get them approved in courts. This is not a guarantee since there can be plenty of difficult emotions, especially if one spouse was dishonest during the marriage.
Couples who have lived together for long periods of time also amass more assets. This can make splitting up the finances more complicated. There may also be tax considerations, future earning capacities, retirement plans, pension plans, and Social Security benefits that could be on the table. Many spouses over 50 years old also have significant debts that must be addressed as well.
Custody and Visitation
If the divorcing couple has children, their needs must also be prioritized. If they are younger, custody and visitation arrangements will need to be addressed. Older children will want to have a voice in these decisions, and even if they live on their own, their emotional needs are still important. Most children do not want to see their parents separate, so it is essential to realize that parenting duties never end.
Costs of Divorce
A divorce can be costly, and it may also be necessary to find a new job. This is not easy after 50 years old, but the job market has improved, and there are many remote options available as well. After the separation, it may become more important to save money by cutting back on certain items. Divorcees may also have to get used to living alone, but this can be a time for reflection and to meet new people. Joining a support group can be helpful.
Delaware County Divorce Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Help Clients Going Through Gray Divorce
If you never thought you would be divorcing after 50 years old, you are far from alone. The Delaware County divorce lawyers at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. can help you with your gray divorce. For an initial consultation, call us at 610-565-3701 or complete our online form. Located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Delaware County, Chester County, and Montgomery County.