Divorce can be a painful and overwhelming process, no matter how old you are or how long you have been married. However, if you are divorcing later in life after being married for a long time, there are some unique circumstances you need to consider. Here are some things to remember when you are divorcing in your golden years.
You Can Still Collect Social Security
Income is often a difficult thing to deal with when you divorce later in life after not having been employed for a long time. Perhaps your spouse was the main source of income, so your social security benefits are calculated based on their income and not yours. In this case, you should still be able to collect the same amount of social security benefits based on their income, as long as you are the right age and have been married for a certain amount of time. You can contact the Social Security Administration to discuss this further and find out what other stipulations there might be.
Adult Children Still Need to be Protected
Many people assume that when they get divorced after their children are already grown, they don't need to worry too much about their wellbeing. However, while there aren't going to be child custody battles, their inheritance could be affected. Work with your spouse during the divorce proceedings to decide how the inheritance will go to your children and grandchildren, based on your separate incomes. This may require adjusting your estate plan and will so that your children still get what you hope to give them after you or your spouse pass.
Keeping the House May Give You Income
If you don't have a job, but your spouse does, you might want to consider asking for the house you lived in and owned together. The reason is that when you own the house, it can become rental income if you end up needing additional income. You can rent out individual rooms to others and have roommates, or rent out the entire house and move somewhere that is less expensive. However, also keep in mind that when you keep the house, it is considered an asset based on its value. Your spouse will also need to get assets with this same value, which might mean affecting your spousal support.
When you are going through the divorce process, get help from a family law attorney. They can help you make the right decisions for your situation and help to oversee any mediation you need. Contact a business, such as Margit M. Hicks, PA Attorney at Law, for more information.
Hello. My name is Stephanie Laurel. I have recently been through a divorce, and although I don’t wish it on anyone, I do wish that everyone could come out of the proceedings feeling they have been taken care of. My husband and I had been married twenty-eight years. We have four children, two of which are still under eighteen years of age. We owned the home we lived in and had a vacation home in a different state. We are civilized people, we get along fairly well considering, but no matter how much we thought we could go through the divorce process without lawyers, it wasn't possible. We each hired a divorce attorney to represent us. Most of the negotiations went well, but when we hit a rough spot the attorneys took over. Thank goodness. I’m going to share more about the experience and hope it helps you.