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Special challenges await women amid late life divorce

According to recent statistics, the rate of divorce for couples ages 50 and older in the United States has almost doubled in the last 15 to 20 years. In what is commonly referred to as gray divorce, couples in Arizona and across the country are deciding to split later in life after decades of marriage. Being single and over the age of 50 can present unique financial challenges, especially for women.

Traditionally, women in the baby boomer generation left major financial decisions up to husbands. Things like investing and retirement planning were shouldered by spouses, so when marriages end late in life women often find themselves in a bit of a present and future financial conundrum. According to a recent survey, almost 60 percent of divorcees did not participate in long-term financial planning while they were married and expressed regret in not doing so.

Most newly-divorced women that were surveyed said that, in hindsight, they would recommend total financial transparency in a marriage. Some financial surprises these women commonly discovered post-divorce were hidden accounts and hidden debt, as well as outdated wills. However, some notable positive things that were discovered included things like 401k retirement accounts and savings accounts that were not known to exist.

Although the rate of gray divorce continues to rise across the country, ending a marriage at any stage in life can be a stressful and confusing thing to experience. Arizona residents that have questions about divorce and family law could benefit from the services of a knowledgeable attorney. A skilled litigator can help individuals navigate through this difficult process.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Rise of 'gray' divorce is forcing a financial reckoning for 50-plus women", Suzanne Woolley, April 20, 2018

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