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Older Adults Facing Unexpected Issues as Divorce Rate Doubles for Those Over 50

Tiffany Johns Law Oct. 28, 2015

At a time when most people are thinking seriously about retirement and living on the assets and income they have acquired along with their spouse, the divorce rate for people over 50 has skyrocketed. The divorce rate is even higher for those in their second marriage.

For those individuals confronting the end of a long-term marriage, plans that might have been decades in the making must be rethought. The two-income household that would carry you through retirement is about to become two households, and that reduction in income could mean having to postpone retirement plans.

Mature individuals whose marriages end in divorce are beset by challenges that are unique to people of their age. Someone in their twenties or thirties facing a divorce might not be confronted by concerns such as:

  • Recovering Financially: Individuals over 50 years of age must deal with the reality of having their assets split in a divorce and seeing their household income cut by half if not more. Being older could mean that earning potential has reached its maximum and the ability to build up what was lost in the divorce might be hampered. The higher tax rates paid by single taxpayers could also factor into the financial difficulties faced by those over 50.

  • Alimony or Spousal Support: Depending upon the relative earning ability of each of the parties to a divorce, one of them could be required to pay support to the other spouse. The addition of another expense could make post-divorce financial management difficult.

  • Housing Consequences: Unless there are young children still living at home, chances are, the home you and your spouse owned will either be sold or one of you will get it as part of the property settlement in the divorce. Either way, both you and your former spouse must now support a household on a single income.

  • Health Insurance: If you are covered under your spouse’s employer-provided medical insurance plan, a divorce adds the additional cost of health care to your already expanding list of post-divorce expenses.

  • Rethinking Obligations: You and your spouse might have been providing financial support for an aging parent, or the two of you might have been helping your own children as they start out in new careers or with new families of their own. A divorce could make it financially impossible for you to continue providing such assistance on your own.

The prospect of facing life on your own after a divorce can be daunting after 50 years of age. The emotional and financial toll of the breakup of your marriage can be difficult from which to recover. One way to lessen the impact of a divorce after age 50 is to get advice and counsel from a competent and compassionate family law professional.

At Middle Tennessee Family Law, Nashville divorce attorney Tiffany Johns puts her business and legal acumen to work for you, to lessen the effects of a divorce. She is passionate about securing a divorce settlement that allows her clients to afford to carry on the lives they desire after a divorce. To find out how we can help, schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your divorce issues and concerns. You can schedule an appointment by calling us or sending an email through our website.