Perhaps you are one of the rising numbers of older Americans ending your marriage. If so, you know that splitting up after the age of 50 involves some unique challenges.
Few older couples have to worry about custody issues and child support, which are often the most contentious aspects of divorce. However, you still have many decisions to make. You likely need questions answered, and the sooner the better.
Will courts award spousal support?
Courts consider the length of the marriage when determining spousal support. As an older couple, you may be in a much longer-lasting marriage than your younger counterparts, so a judge may be more likely to award spousal support. However, factors other than marriage length also come into play and each situation is different.
Who gets what?
If you and your spouse have been together a long time, you may have amassed many shared assets. Higher net worth may make property division complicated. If you co-own a business, you and your spouse have many difficult decisions to make regarding the future of the company.
If you suspect your spouse may hide assets in order to achieve a better financial settlement, you may need special help. A forensic accountant can help uncover what your spouse may try to conceal.
What happens to our retirement plans?
Retirement may be close, so this is often a key worry for older divorcing couples. In Texas, assets acquired during marriage are community property, typically including retirement accounts. However, many factors affect a court’s decision regarding retirement accounts. One factor is the date of origination (before or after the marriage); another is the type of account.