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What are the special challenges of gray divorce?

Gray divorce is a divorce of an older couple. Generally speaking, if you are over the age of 55, then it falls into this category when you end your marriage.

Divorcing at an older age gets a distinction because this type of divorce is much different than the divorce of a younger couple. Due to the years you have been together and the extent of your marriage, it can introduce a variety of issues that younger couples do not have.

Retirement is close

Because of your age, Forbes explains, you are at a stage of life where you are close to retirement, so any decisions about your retirement accounts in the divorce will have a larger impact on you than if you were younger. The property division portion of your divorce will very much impact your retirement accounts unless you can create a strategy to avoid it, which usually means giving up other assets.

In most cases, your spouse will have an equal right to these accounts. So, you need a plan to either avoid splitting them or to figure out how you can stay on track with retirement when you lose half the money you had saved away.

Entanglements are deeper

The number of years you have been together can complicate the situation because it means your lives are more entangled than in a younger couple. You may not remember details about property you had prior to marriage or how you gained certain assets. It may be tough to do anything other than claiming all property as marital property.

Not to mention that having this long history can make for more emotions. If you have adult children, they may try to involve themselves, which can create hard feelings all around.