If you’re over 50 and you file for divorce, you may hear it referred to as “a gray divorce.” This is simply done to differentiate it from the sheer number of divorces that happen at a younger age — such as couples in their 30s and 40s with school-aged children.
There are a number of reasons why it’s important to consider couples in that age range as a separate group. For one thing, child custody is often at the heart of most younger divorce cases but usually does not affect gray divorce nearly as much. Older couples are more interested in things like asset division, retirement accounts, investments and other financial concerns.
The rate of gray divorces has risen dramatically
Another reason to think of older divorced couples as a distinct group, however, is the mere fact the rate has recently doubled for these divorce cases. Most other age groups are seeing a decline, but older individuals are embracing divorce at a higher and higher rate.
What this means is that more people are coming into their divorces with significant assets and very different concerns than you would expect in the past. If a couple has been together for 20 or 30 years, it’s far more complicated to end that relationship than if they had been together for 4 or 5 years. This can lead to extended cases and contested rulings.
Exploring all your options during divorce
Regardless of your age, be sure you look into all of your options during your divorce. If financial concerns rank higher than anything else, you need to secure your future by knowing exactly what steps you can take to protect your interests. An experienced advocate can help guide you through every stage of the process.