Divorce has a way of creating problems even for those with a very stable life. When you divorce in special circumstances, the potential for complicating factors is much higher. A silver divorce involving people near or past the age of retirement comes with numerous unique concerns.
Careful planning and realistic expectations can make divorce a less painful process. What issues will you need to address if you think it is time to divorce after decades of marriage?
How do you handle retirement accounts and pensions?
The longer you have remained married, the bigger the portion of your retirement savings and pension accounts that are likely marital property.
The spouse with their name on the account or pension isn’t the only one with a claim to those savings or benefits. Spouses will have to figure out a way to fairly split retirement savings at a time when neither spouse is likely to continue earning much in the future.
Where will you live after the divorce?
Your retirement budget likely factored in shared expenses for two spouses living in one home. Now, those savings will have to support two households. It can be harder to maintain the same marital home on a fixed income after a divorce, and you may not be able to afford your own home. Some people who go through a silver divorce will have to consider living with roommates or possibly living with family.
Thinking about the unique financial concerns for older couples divorcing can help you manage practical concerns like property division more reasonably.