Over the last few decades, there has been a substantial increase in the number of “gray divorces” that occur in this country. The term “gray divorce” refers to couples who dissolve a marriage later on in their lives. Given the nature of gray divorces, there are a number of unique financial issues that occur during divorce, which will be reviewed in this article.

Asset Division

One of the most challenging issues involved with “gray divorces” is that of how assets owned by the couple will be divided. It is often difficult for couples to determine exactly what each spouse has contributed when they have been together for so many years. When tasked with dividing assets in Georgia, courts used equitable distribution, which means what the court determines to be fair rather than a strict 50/50 division of property. Some of the factors that courts will analyze when deciding how to divide property include the length of time that the couple was married, the age and health of both of the parties, the value of the property, and the income of both of the parties.

How Social Security Benefits are Assigned

Everyone deserves to live their retirement years peacefully, but divorce has the potential to disrupt this. Divorce is frequently expensive and couples often have difficulty rebuilding their finances afterwards. Some people who go through a “gray divorce” discover that Social Security benefits can help obtain the financial security that they need during this time. Only in a limited number of circumstances is it possible for one spouse to claim benefits based on a former spouse’s work record.

Other Complex Issues Involved in “Gray Divorces”

Some of the other complex issues that frequently arise during gray divorces include the following:

  • The amount of alimony that one spouse should be required to pay the other. Determining alimony is frequently just as complicated a process as the division of assets and requires courts to analyze a number of different factors.
  • Inheritances are frequently classified as “separate property” and are not considered marital property to be distributed among the couple. These assets, however, can have a substantial impact on a person’s divorce settlement if the amount is commingled and turned into assets.
  • Any person paying alimony is required to have life insurance in an amount that is equal to the amount of alimony involved. As a result, a person can be required to pay not just alimony but also for life insurance.
  • A large number of companies are beginning to favor 401(k)s instead of pension plans. In either situation, there are often complex issues that arise in regards to how and when the account is capable of being divided.

To navigate these and many other issues associated with gray divorce, the assistance of an experienced attorney often becomes essential.  

Speak with an Experienced Divorce LawyerContact Vayman & Teitelbaum P.C. if you are debating initiating a gray divorce. Our law firm has helped numerous people navigate the complex issues involved with divorces and remain committed to fighting for the best possible resolution in your case.