I don’t think any woman plans to go through a divorce in their 50’s.
I know for me, going through my own divorce in my 50’s was terrifying.
Let’s face it – it’s life shattering at any age, but at this time in your life, it just seems even more difficult.
Do you ask yourself…
“Why did he wait until this time in my life to want a divorce?”
“What am I supposed to do now?”
“Am I going to have to get a job – go back to work after all this time?”
“What is this doing to our family – did he even think about that?”
There are so many things that we just don’t expect.
According to research on divorce in the U.S., divorce rates are declining – except for people over 50! Twenty years ago, just 1 in 10 spouses who split was age 50 or older. Today, according to Dr. Susan Brown, co-author of The Gray Divorce Revolution, it is 1 in 4!
And divorce in your 50’s can be particularly devastating financially…
According to Investopedia, a financial education website, women who are divorced in their 50’s are greatly impacted and have many unique concerns around their financial well-being moving forward.
According to government statistics, household income drops by about 25% for men and more than 40% for women. And as a women’s life expectancy rises into their 80’s, women may find themselves living longer with a lot less.
Here are the top 10 Mistakes to Avoid according to Investopedia:
1. Failing to create an inventory of assets.
Often one partner has a better understanding of the couple’s finances. If you’re the other partner (as many women are) you may not be up to speed. You’ll want to take an inventory of all assets, including bank accounts, retirement accounts, and life insurance policies. Ask me for my free PDF list of financial documents you need and how to access them.
2. Holding on to the house.
They recommend thinking long and hard about whether to keep it. Before deciding, figure out if you can afford the mortgage. It may be your refuge, but it can be a money pit…you must consider, upkeep, property taxes and emergency repairs.
3. Not knowing what you owe.
Promising “to have and to hold” can bounce back to bite you! If you’re in a community property state, you’ll be held responsible for half of your spouses debt even if the debt isn’t in your name. Let me know if you need help knowing if you are going to be held responsible.
4. Ignoring tax consequences.
Every financial decision comes with a tax bill. How should you take alimony or spousal maintenance? How will an investment account be taxed? You must consult with an accountant or tax advisor.
5. Forgetting about health insurance.
If you’ve been covered under your spouse’s policy, you may be in for a shocking surprise when you have to get your own policy. I know I didn’t take that into account and my health insurance premiums tripled!
6. Rolling over your ex’s retirement account into an IRA.
You may need to have a QDRO (Qualified Domestic Relations Order) Do check with your attorney concerning a QDRO.
7. Supporting your adult children.
I know you love your kids, but YOU are the priority now!
8. Hiding assets from your spouse.
You may be tempted to try this so it looks like you have less money to contribute, but this is illegal and can cost you more in legal fees and court time – very risky and can lead to huge negative consequences.
9. Underestimating your expenses.
Remember, I talk about income covering one set of household expenses is now divided into two. I help women to take a realistic look at how much money they’ll need to live on and be sure they can cover all their expenses on their own without relying on their ex.
10. Thinking your divorce attorney is your friend.
Remember, your attorney is charging you for every phone call, email, and written document he is preparing for you. That is why having a Certified Divorce Coach to help you get organized will save money now. He/she is providing you with legal advice, but is not trained to handle the emotional fallout from your divorce…
Divorce is devastating at any age, but it’s especially difficult if you’re in your 50’s and 60’s…
If you need help, I’d be happy to speak with you on a confidential Reclaim Your Life Call.
You will learn what your next best step would be in dealing with the business of divorce.
Simply go to nextchapterdivorce coaching.com/connect and find a time that works for you.