What your age has to do with your divorce

Life expectancy for Missouri residents has increased through the years, right along with everyone throughout the nation. This means many people tend to be married much longer than what the average marriage lasted long ago. If you've been with your spouse for two or more decades, you've likely acquired many assets and perhaps, even own a business or have various stocks, bonds and investments in your financial portfolio.  

That's all well and good unless you're currently preparing for divorce. Things can get rather complicated concerning marital property, retirement funds, Social Security, taxes and more. However, you're definitely not alone in your decision to divorce later in life. There's been a tremendous increase in divorce for people age 50 and beyond, so much so that people invented the colloquial term, "gray divorce" to categorize the topic. To avoid obstacles as you proceed toward settlement, you'll want to carefully review state laws and have access to legal support as well. 

Gray divorce statistics 

As recent as 2015, analysts estimate that at least 10 people ages 50 or over filed for divorce out of every 1,000 married persons. That number is higher than it was in previous years and has continued to increase since then. In fact, for those in the over-65 age bracket, the divorce rate has tripled in the last two decades.  

If you're between the ages of 51 and 69, you are part of the group known as baby boomers. You're also among those who supposedly have had the highest rate of divorce in young adulthood, thus, some say, leading to a higher rate of gray divorce because remarriages are said to be less likely to last a lifetime than first marriages.  

Financial implications 

While widows and widowers may face some financial difficulties in the wakes of their spouses' deaths, divorcing beyond age 50 places you at further risk for financial insecurity. Re-entering single life in your golden years can significantly disrupt your financial comfort. It's critical that you understand Missouri property division laws before heading to court.  

Missouri, like most other states, operates under equitable property division rules in divorce. This means the court will determine a fair and agreeable division of your marital property although the split may not be 50/50.  

Social consequences and other issues 

Living alone after spending the last 25-50 years of your life with the same person takes a lot of getting used to. It's not uncommon to feel lonely or sad at the loss of companionship. It often helps to connect with others who have shared similar experiences so you have a support network in place as you move on in life.  

There are also legal resources available to address any concerns you may have regarding your finances, property, business interests or other marital assets. You don't have to go it alone; the right kind of support can help you achieve your goals in as swift and low-stress a manner as possible. 

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