Skilled And Personalized Family Law Services

Untying the Knot After 50: Common Questions About Gray Divorce

On Behalf of | Jun 8, 2023 | Divorce |

Divorce can be particularly challenging when it happens in your sunset years. More and more couples are choosing to end their marriages after 50. This phenomenon is commonly known as gray divorce.

What are the reasons behind this growing trend? Is a gray divorce any different, and what should you expect? These are some of the most common questions – and answers – about gray divorce.

Why are more people divorcing after 50?

There is no single reason why more people are divorcing after 50. Some of the possible reasons include:

  • Empty nest syndrome: When children leave home, some couples may realize they have grown apart or have nothing in common anymore.
  • Better health and high life expectancy rates: People are living longer, healthier lives, giving them more time and opportunities to pursue their interests and happiness.
  • Retirement: Retirement can bring major changes in lifestyle, income, and expectations, creating stress and conflict in a marriage.
  • Midlife crisis: Some people may experience a midlife crisis and seek a new partner or adventure to feel younger and more alive again.

As with most divorces, other reasons like infidelity and financial reasons can also play a part.

How will a gray divorce affect your finances?

Divorce can significantly impact your finances if you have been married for a long time and have accumulated significant assets and debts together. You may need to divide your property, retirement accounts, pensions and debts with your spouse, which can reduce your net worth and income. Depending on your situation, you may also need to adjust to paying or receiving spousal support or alimony.

How long will it take?

The individual circumstances of your divorce will determine its duration. Various factors such as residency requirements, the waiting period, the complexity of the case and the level of cooperation between the spouses will determine how long it will take. On average, a gray divorce can take several months to a year or more to reach a resolution, although an uncontested divorce is almost always faster than a contested affair.

The importance of legal guidance

Divorce after 50 can be a difficult and complex process, but it can also be an opportunity for growth and happiness. If you are considering a divorce, you may benefit from seeking legal assistance to navigate the legal, financial, emotional and social aspects of your situation.