According to nationwide statistics, the average person getting their first
divorce is 30 years old, and the average length of a marriage in the United States
is only eight years. While these statistics seem to suggest that only
the young are divorcing, the truth is that
gray divorce is on the rise around the country.
Gray divorce is a pop-culture term for when a couple over the age of 50
divorces. The cause of this noticeable increase of divorces later in life
is not entirely known. It could be due to more people finding financial
stability in recent years, which would allow them to more comfortably
end their marriage without fear of ending up in poverty. An increase in
second and third marriages – which are much more likely to end in
divorce than a first marriage – may also explain the rise. Regardless
as to why more people are getting divorced later in life, the complications
that can come with it are unchanged.
If you are going through a divorce after age 50, be sure to pay special
If you need to file for a gray divorce but aren’t sure where to
begin, or if you are worried about the complexities it could present,
McKinley Irvin can provide highly-experienced, trusted experience to your
case. Our Oregon divorce lawyers have represented clients throughout the
state, as well as in Washington, in complex divorce matters.
online if you would like to arrange a consultation.
Property division: The longer a marriage lasted, the more assets the couple will accrue
together – at least, this is true in most cases. A gray divorce
can unexpectedly become a complex or high-net worth divorce simply due
to the amount of property the couple shares.
Retirement plans: Many couples going through a gray divorce also forget to consider their
own retirement benefits or plans, including social security. This represents
a major source of finances for many older individuals, and dividing it,
or fighting to
not divide it, can become a source of contention.
Health and life insurance policies: Deciding what to do with life insurance policies in a gray divorce can
be noticeably complicated since such policies may increase in value as
years go on. It is also crucial for divorcing couples in their golden
years to consider health insurance benefits that may be revoked once the
gray divorce is finalized. For this reason, some people may choose to
go through a
legal separation instead.
Clarity of mind: Any sort of legal contract can be called into question if there is any
reason to believe that it was made or signed while one of the interested
parties was unable to understand its language or impact. If someone going
through a gray divorce has had experiences with memory loss or difficulties,
special legal counsel may be necessary as the case progresses to ensure
they know what is happening in their divorce.