More Seniors Splitting Up
Now that the latest round of the U.S. Census has been conducted, the facts and figures collected are beginning to show some new trends concerning the status of divorce in the United States. One of the trends that came to light when examining the marriage and divorce rates for 2008 is that older couples are getting more divorces later in life. The Census Bureau reports show that 26% of divorces in 2008 were filed by couples who had been married 20 years or longer. This is not a reassuring trend for society, as rebuilding your life after a divorce is difficult under the best circumstances and starting life over as a single senior citizen will likely prove to be a huge obstacle for those unlucky enough to find themselves in that situation.
While senior citizens contemplating divorce may not be too concerned with issues like child support and custody, they will have to deal with plenty of other challenges. Older couples have had more time to acquire multiple assets and debts that will have to be divided equitably to ensure both spouses will come out of the process in a somewhat financially intact position. Older spouses may be already retired or very close to retirement age, and will not really have much time to replenish their retirement and investment accounts. This makes splitting the assets and debts fairly even more critical. It is unlikely that a spouse’s financial position will improve after divorce, but if the split is handled correctly it is possible for both sides to enjoy a fairly comfortable standard of living. A divorce late in life brings the risk of increased long-term financial instability for both parties and it might be more important for seniors to create a viable divorce plan than it is for any other age or demographic group in the nation.