Kathy D. Sheive Attorney at Law

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Financial matters that late-life divorcees have to worry about

Grey divorces, or those among individuals 50 or older, have increased significantly during the past few decades. Right now, this population's divorce rate hovers around 25 percent. Back in the 1990s, only 10 percent of their marriages failed. In the future, at least twice as many seniors are expected to be divorced. This trend causes alarm among financial planners and family law attorneys who work closely with this population.

Dividing up property can be hard for seniors, especially if they've been married for a significant amount of time. One of the reasons that this is the case is because it's difficult for most married couples to know what's joint property versus the individual.

When spouses have owned something for a significant amount of time, they often don't remember how it was acquired. The value of items tends to be more sentimental than monetary as well.

Another factor that concerns many about this uptick in gray divorce is how property division negotiations may affect this populations' ability to have a comfortable retirement. In many cases, a judge may order as much as one-half of an individual's pension or Social Security benefits to be paid to their ex as part of a divorce settlement.

While the entire amount that a retiree in Kissimmee was expecting to bring in may have covered their bills, half of that may not come anywhere close to helping them pay for their expenses.

Another concern those who work with this population have expressed has to do with medical costs. When a Florida couple divorces, the spouse of the husband or wife who carries the health insurance policy will lose coverage. Unless they have some other plan in place, then they could find themselves crippled by medical costs, especially since health expenditures seem to increase with age.

Anytime that a marriage falls apart, spouses inevitably find themselves having to pick up the financial pieces. Those who are facing a late-life divorce often find that their property division matters are magnified and that the only way to make ends meet is to request alimony. If that's the same predicament that you find yourself in, then a divorce attorney can advise you of your prospects of receiving it.

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