How To Divorce Well After Fifty
Most couples fifty and older are empty nesters who are saving and preparing to retire soon. Savings and pension plans are no longer things far off in the future, but they are becoming a near reality. Divorce during or near retirement has different obstacles than divorce earlier in life; and finding out if you can live off of 50% of your assets is key. Read more from CNBC financial producer Katie Young in the article below.
Calling it quits after 50?
If you’re going through a divorce later in life you’re not alone — it’s actually a growing trend, leading researchers to coin the phase “Gray Divorce.”
The divorce rate among adults over age 50 doubled between 1990 and 2014, according to the National Center for Family & Marriage Research. For those over 65, divorces tripled during roughly the same period.
Older couples going through the process may be in for a rude awakening when it comes to their nest eggs.
“The biggest difference is time,” said Crystal Alford-Cooper, a certified financial planner and owner of Davita Financial Planning in Savage, Maryland. “An older couple are closer to retirement, so you have less years to make up.”
Having an empty nest may lead to some unexpected issues, said family law attorney Lynne Gold-Bikin, with Wolf, Block, Schorr and Solis-Cohen in Norristown, Pennsylvania.
“After kids are out of the home, that is when they should be saving money,” Gold-Bikin said. “When we talk about gray divorce, it’s the standard of living they now have, and can they sustain it?”
Decide if you can live off your post-split savings
While negotiating your divorce agreement, it’s important to take a hard look at what you’ll receive in the form of retirement accounts, Social Security and property, said Alford-Cooper.
“At one point you had 100 percent of the assets between the two of you,” Alford-Cooper said. “Now you have a lesser piece of the pie. The question becomes is that going to get you through your life span?”