One of the biggest trends in Las Vegas divorce is an increase in the number of couples divorcing later in life. The trend has been nicknamed “gray divorce.”
While many older divorcing couples are elated to enjoy newfound freedom, it is important to give serious consideration to special factors that come into play when you divorce at a more advanced point in life.
Identifying Pre-Marital Assets Can Be a Challenge
Gray divorce often involves couples who have been married 20 years or more. When a couple has shared assets and expenses for that length of time, it can be difficult to ascertain exactly which assets they owned individually before the marriage. Even recently-acquired assets that are traditionally treated as separate property, such as an inheritance or gift, may be treated as marital property.
This is because so often one spouse’s property is mingled with joint property and used as part of marital life. If you want to keep your pre-marital property all to yourself, try to locate as many records as possible that identify your separate property and document steps you took to keep it apart from marital assets.
Marital Assets May Be Difficult to Locate
Can you remember every investment or purchase you made throughout your marriage? Locating and identifying all marital assets can be difficult for couples divorcing after many years together.
The task is even more onerous if one spouse is trying to hide assets. If you suspect that may be the case, be sure to work divorce attorney who understands how to use forensic accounting methods to locate hidden assets so you can receive your fair share as you divide your property.
One Spouse May Have Difficulties with Health Insurance
Couples often find it cost-effective to enroll in the same insurance plan, generally one offered through a spouse’s employer. Divorce makes the non-employee spouse ineligible for future coverage.
Obtaining new insurance when you’re over 50 may be a pricey proposition. Therefore, it’s important to investigate the availability of coverage and factor that expense into plans for the division of property or spousal support.
The Economic Disparity is Likely to Be Greater in Gray Divorce
When couples divorce at an older age, chances are that one of them spent considerable time focused on home and family rather than advancing their career. Even if both are working at the time of the divorce, one is probably earning significantly more. This disparity can make it more likely a court will order spousal support.
Special Handling is Required for Splitting Pensions and Retirement Accounts
Retirement accounts and pension plans are assets that can be challenging to split in any divorce. However, in gray divorce, these assets often represent a significant portion of a couple’s assets, so developing a fair plan to allocate the assets while complying with legal requirements is crucial.
You Have Less Time to Rebuild Your Savings
Divorcing couples need to set up separate households, which increases their living expenses. When couples divorce at an older age, these expenses hit them at a time when they have fewer years left to rebuild their savings. It may be necessary to adjust retirement plans to work until a later age, move to a location with a lower cost of living, or develop other strategies to earn more or spend less.
Work with a Divorce Attorney Who is Prepared to Protect Your Interests in a Gray Divorce
The factors that make gray divorce more challenging are certainly not insurmountable. However, to protect your future, it is crucial to work with a divorce attorney who understands the key issues and is ready to take the steps necessary to address the additional concerns.
At Naimi & Cerceo Law Group, we have extensive experience assisting clients who choose to divorce later in life, and we take great satisfaction in enabling them to emerge ready to enjoy a brighter future. We invite you to contact us today to learn how we could assist in your situation.