How To Prepare For A Gray Divorce
Getting divorced in Georgia at any age, and after any number of years of marriage, can be difficult and emotional. For older adults who have been married for decades and are considering the possibility of a “gray divorce,” as these types of divorce cases have become known, it is important to consider specific issues leading up to the divorce process and during the divorce case. According to a Psychology Today article, the rate of gray divorce filings has risen significantly in the last few decades, with the overall rate of divorce among older couples having doubled since 1990. By the year 2030, researchers estimate that the rate will have tripled. If you are among those who are considering a gray divorce, the following are some things to help prepare for a gray divorce.
Consider Whether Your Retirement Income is Sufficient
One of the biggest issues in a gray divorce is whether each spouse will have sufficient resources to live as a single person based on retirement accounts, pensions, and other resources. Since most gray divorces occur after the parties have already retired, it is essential to determine whether your retirement income is sufficient, or whether you may need to return to the workforce. If there is a possibility that you might need to go back to work, it is important to consider your options carefully based on your current circumstances, as a Forbes article emphasizes.
Make Health Insurance Plans
While health insurance can be an issue in any type of divorce when one spouse has health insurance through the other spouse’s employer plan, health insurance plans are particularly important for older adults. If you do not yet qualify for Medicare, it is critical to develop a plan for healthcare.
Think About Your Mental Health After a Long-Term Marriage
Getting divorced after an especially long marriage can have emotional and psychological consequences or effects that you might not be considering yet. It is important to have plans in place to ensure that your mental health is taken care of, whether that means discussing your divorce with an existing therapist or making plans to find a new mental health care provider.
Understand Whether Alimony May Be Awarded in Your Case
Alimony is often awarded in divorces after long-term marriages when one of the spouses has insufficient resources. Indeed, Georgia law even permits permanent alimony to be awarded in certain gray divorces. You should find out whether you should anticipate alimony being awarded in your case.
Plan to Tell Your Adult Children
Although children from a marriage are usually adults themselves when that marriage ends in a gray divorce, it is nonetheless important to plan to tell them about your divorce plans. In some gray divorces, adult children have already been married and divorced themselves. Yet no matter how old your children might be, it is essential to remember that they are likely to have feelings that they will need to process and they will want the opportunity to discuss the divorce with you.
Contact a Divorce Lawyer in Atlanta
When you are planning for a gray divorce, one of the most important things you must do is hire an experienced Atlanta divorce attorney who has handled divorces following long-term marriages. One of the advocates at our firm can speak with you today about the circumstances surrounding your divorce, and what you should expect as you move forward with your case. Contact Kaye, Lembeck, Hitt & French to learn more about how we can assist you with your divorce.