gray divorce older couple sitting facing away from each other on couch

In today’s society, divorce has become more socially acceptable. As less stigma surrounds divorce, more and more couples are seeking to terminate their marriage. There are several reasons why a couple may decide to dissolve their marriage such as they have grown apart, financial differences, infidelity, etc. When an older couple is in a long-term marriage, they are often confronted with challenges that younger couples in shorter marriages do not face. For instance, many older couples underestimate the impact spousal support can have on their overall financial security. Nevertheless, regardless of the reasoning for divorce or how old a couple is the divorce process can be extremely stressful and overwhelming. Please continue to follow along to learn about gray divorces and how our adept Monmouth County Spousal Support Attorneys can help you. 

What is a gray divorce?

Spouses 50 years of age or older dissolving their marriage undergo a gray divorce. Essentially, a gray divorce occurs when an older couple, typically between the ages of 50 and 70 years old that has been in a long-term marriage wants to terminate their marriage. Gray divorce is often sought by members of the Baby Boomer generation. The term “gray divorce” was coined because there was a significant increase in the divorce rate of the older (grey-haired) demographic while the overall divorce rate in the U.S. was decreasing. Essentially, the term refers to the significant increase in older couples in long-lasting marriages.

What is the impact of spousal support in this type of divorce?

Regardless of age, when a couple seeks a divorce, during litigation the lower-earning spouse may request that the higher-earning spouse pay them spousal support. Spousal support also known as alimony is essentially court-ordered payments that provide financial support to a spouse during or after a divorce to maintain the lifestyle that was established during the marriage. When a judge determines whether to award a spouse spousal support, they evaluate several factors. However, the two most important factors they take into consideration are the lower-earning spouse’s actual need for financial support and whether the higher-earning spouse can afford it. If the court does grant a spouse spousal support, a spouse will receive maintenance payments until they either find employment or remarry. When it comes to couples in a gray divorce, the issue of spousal support is complicated. This is because once an individual reaches a certain age, they often retire from their place of employment. Once an individual retires, they rely on their retirement benefits and savings to live. If a spouse requests spousal support in a gray divorce, the higher-earning spouse may be required to pay spousal support for the rest of their life. The court does not expect an older individual who has retired to return to work. With that being said, in some cases, the court will split the individual’s retirement benefits. Ultimately, this could significantly affect an individual’s financial security.

If you are seeking a gray divorce, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our determined and skilled attorneys. Our firm can help you navigate the complexities associated with this type of divorce. Allow our seasoned attorneys to fight on your behalf today so we can help protect your hard-earned assets during the divorce process.