WHAT IS A GRAY DIVORCE?

Michael J. Clonts, Esq.

undefinedA study by the Pew Research Center from March of 2017 showed divorce rates for adults ages 50 and older have roughly doubled in the past 25 years.  These types of divorces are often called “gray” divorce.

There are several contributing factors to this increase, one being that no-fault divorce is now available in all 50 states so, unhappy couples can separate after raising their children. 

Another huge factor is that more women are becoming financially independent so they don’t have to stay married for financial stability. 

A third reason is that people’s view of retirement has changed.

As people are living longer and overall wealth has increased, retirement has come to mean a second season in life, with new goals and motivations. 

Sometimes the goals and motivations that were present at the start of marriage are either fulfilled or have changed, and the couple realizes that they are no longer wanting the same things from life and the marriage. 

Whatever the reason, the law allows these couples to go their separate ways.

In the Arizona judicial system, divorce (or dissolution of marriage) is divided into two main types: Dissolution with Minor Children and Dissolution without Minor Children.

However, divorce involves much more than whether or not there are children.  It also must address a division of assets and liabilities and in gray divorces the key focus is on financial sustainability in retirement for each person. 

For married couples nearing or in the years of retirement, the division of these assets are more crucial than for couples still in the earning years. 

A fight over retirement assets and the appropriate allocation becomes the central focus, and unfortunately we frequently find that the amount of assets may not match up to the life expectancy of the parties if they were to continue living together, much less if they are living apart.

If you are at or are approaching retirement age and are considering divorce, and you would like to work with one of our experienced Attorneys, please call OWENS & PERKINS at 480.630.2464 to schedule your free 30 minute consultation.

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