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Baby Boomers: Protect Yourself in Divorce Past 50

scaleDivorce is difficult at any age and a USA Today article that focuses on how important it is for Baby Boomers to protect themselves if they divorce past 50:

“Gray divorces” are occurring more than ever before — the rate for adults ages 50 and older doubled between 1990 and 2010, according to research from the National Center for Family and Marriage Research at Bowling Green University in Bowling Green, Ohio.”

You must be careful about agreeing to a settlement no matter your age, but when one divorces over 50, there will be less time to make up for any missteps made while working out a financial agreement under what may be stressful circumstances.

While there are no guarantees in love, Baby Boomers who remained married as they approach middle age may have expected to stay married for life and divorce may come as a shock. Whether you are able to keep emotions from running high or not, the article notes you may find it useful to seek the help of a neutral third party, and a Fee-Only financial planner can assist.

Here are some other matters to consider:

Estate planning: You may have to change the beneficiaries for various accounts you have and during a stressful divorce, a financial advisor can remind you of this. You and your former spouse will also have to go over how your separation will change the distribution of your assets.

Health care: This is a major financial consideration for those over 50 and if you are dependent on your spouse for health insurance, you will need to secure coverage. Healthcare costs can be included in a settlement and “Some states allow the insured spouse to extend coverage to the dependent spouse…”

As we discussed in an earlier post, divorcees can claim spousal social security benefits and you need to be aware of your rights in this area.

Whether you are a Baby Boomer who is in the middle of a divorce or a Baby Boomer who has already divorced, a Fee-Only financial advisor can help you make good use of your resources and advise you on protecting your financial future, even in the wake of major change.