What to Expect When You Divorce at an Older Age

Healthy divorce: How to make your split as smooth as possible

A lot of older people in Charlotte, NC file for divorce. These couples face different issues than younger divorcing couples. If you are over the age of 50 or older and considering a divorce, here are important considerations you must keep in mind:

Property Division in Grady Divorce

In North Carolina, marital property is distributed equitably, which is not necessarily an equal split. In a divorce that involves older spouses, the couple may have accumulated significant assets during the course of their marriage and dividing these assets can contentious. Your and your spouse may choose to reach an agreement by yourself with the help of a charlotte family law attorney in an uncontested divorce instead of letting the court divide your assets. With this option, you can determine which assets you want to get. 

Meanwhile, in a contested divorce, your lifestyle can significantly change after your assets are equitably divided by a court. You may not be able to pay for college or weddings of your adult children. Also, you may no longer be able to travel as frequently as before. If you have not worked during your marriage, you may need to find employment after divorce. You and your spouse may decide to sell your family home as you downsize to smaller residences.

What Will Happen to Your Retirement Savings?

You and your spouse may have significant retirement savings to divide during a divorce. The court will divide these savings depending on when they were started. If a 401 (k) plan was started by a spouse after the marriage, the account is subject to an equitable division. If the plan was started before the marriage, the account is considered the spouse’s separate property. However, it can be hard to determine the “separate” amount of the account. Often, the court will divide this how they see equitable, which can be unpredictable. A spouse who loses a portion of their retirement savings in a divorce may need to work longer than previously estimated or make major changes to their retirement lifestyle.

An experienced family attorney in Charlotte understands that a divorce that involves an older couple is quite different from when a younger couple ends their marriage. If you are in this situation, you must hire a lawyer who realizes that you may have accumulated significant assets during your marriage and need strong representation to ensure your interests are protected. After you worked hard all your life, you deserve a comfortable retirement even if you decide to live alone.  

Jennifer Winget

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