If you are a married person over the age of 65 in Florida, you may have a higher chance of divorcing than you imagine. In today's economic climate - and with Floridians living longer than ever - many couples are splitting in their twilight years, spawning a high asset divorce phenomenon known as "gray divorce." Waiting until your children are grown and out of the house means that you will not have to worry about child custody and child support considerations, but you will have different concerns for your marital property. These include negotiations for a high asset divorce, where you may have had less property to distribute in your younger years.
So, how do you structure your divorce to benefit your financial circumstances? Finding the right divorce attorney to represent your interests in court can be a great start, but that is only the beginning. You also need to consider other important elements like maintaining your standard of living after the divorce.
In many instances, long-term marriages have a significant amount of financial equity built up in the family home. Deciding whether you can afford to keep the home is one important choice when it comes to real estate and asset division - you do not want to end up "house rich and cash poor," leaving you with few liquid assets. Similarly, complex asset division can abound in a gray divorce, with questions about pensions, property interests, and 401(k) accounts, among others.
What is the answer to asset valuation and divorce in your later years? Both parties need to be committed to open disclosure about their assets, to start. Further, although you may want to rush through your divorce just to get it over with, taking your time to thoroughly valuate your marital property can help your chances of fairness in a high asset divorce.
Source: WTOP, "Over 65? How to know if you can afford a ‘gray divorce’," Dawn Doebler, Feb. 21, 2017