Divorce Issues That Can Affect Older Couples

When two people decide to end a marriage, it is a very difficult process, but it can be especially troublesome if you are an older couple. Ending a marriage after a long period of time has special considerations, some of which a young couple will not have to deal with. Here are some of those issues that older spouses must figure out.

Income From Social Security

You may not be working a job anymore, but you or your spouse are at the age to receive social security benefits. There are actually regulations that allow someone to receive some of their former spouse's benefits in certain situations. An example would be if you're over 62 years old, did not remarry after the divorce, and your marriage lasted 10 years or more

Dividing Pension Plans

Pensions are a way that couples plan for retirement together. Sometimes a couple will rely on one partner's pension for their retirement, which can really mess up the retirement plans for the non-pension receiving partner during a divorce. A judge will need to issue a domestic relations order that allows the pension to be distributed between both partners after the divorce.

Dividing The Main Residence

A home can be a very valuable asset in old age, which is why it is a big issue in divorces among older couples. This is mainly for tax purposes though. Older homeowners qualify for reverse mortgages once they reach 62 years old. This is a way to add much needed income for a person later in life, and why a home can be heavily contested. The elderly also receive a discount on their homeowners taxes, which makes it advantageous to own a home rather than rent an apartment.

Providing Medical Support

It is unfortunate, but your health is often a focal point as you get older. You might be in a situation where your spouse has a major medical condition and they are not able to work anymore. You may be required to provide your spouse medical support in a divorce if they are unable to care for themselves and depended on you.

Divorce is tough at any age, but a bunch of new issues come up when you are older. If you need help with a divorce in old age, be sure to work with a lawyer that can walk you through the process. It is the best way to avoid any surprises along the way.