The gray divorce phenomenon, or the number of people over the age of 50 who have filed for divorce, has taken America by storm. While only 2.8% of people in this age range filed for divorce 50 years ago, that number increased to 15.4% in 2011 and continues to rise. There are a number of factors to consider when people over the age of 50 decide to terminate their marriage. Like in any divorce, marital property that was accumulated throughout years of marriage must be divided between you and your spouse. However, there may be different financial considerations that affect property division when you are older, compared to when you are younger and going through a divorce.
Many people over the age of 50 have acquired money in a 401k plan, retirement account or term life insurance policy. They many also have Social Security benefits, stock options, homes and other possessions. All of these are eligible for division in a divorce, which could leave some couples in a financial bind when it comes to making it on their own. Texas, like several other states in the nation, is a community property state, meaning all marital property is divided in half between spouses. This may involve selling the family home and other possessions and then splitting the revenue in half. In some cases, people may have to return to work or turn to other means of income in order to financially support themselves post-divorce.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.