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Why many older spouses opt for divorce

The rising rates of divorce among older Americans has made headlines in Massachusetts and across the nation. More and more couples are taking stock of their lives as they near or enter retirement, and many find that they are not happy with the status quo. As a result, many older spouses find themselves facing divorce, at an age at which financial losses can mean serious hardship. For these couples, proper divorce planning is a crucial part of ending a marriage.

Older spouses simply have less time within the workforce to recover from any financial loss associated with divorce. This means that the choices made regarding property division and how to divide retirement savings must be made very carefully. Spouses must also be aware of the tax ramifications of various options, and be prepared to work toward a settlement that preserves the greatest amount of wealth possible.

While each marriage is unique, there are several factors that lead older individuals to decide to divorce. One issue involves a loss of connection with one's partner. In many cases, once the children have left the home and moved on to build families of their own, spouses are left alone in one another's company. In certain situations, it can become glaringly obvious that there is no longer a connection between partners, and that the couple lacks a shared set of goals or desires for the future.

When a Massachusetts couple over the age of 50 is considering divorce, the best course of action is to try to take a collaborative approach. By working together to preserve the family's wealth and avoid lengthy and expensive litigation, a couple can emerge from divorce with a much stronger financial foundation for the years ahead. Once the process is complete, both parties can move forward to build the retirement that they envisioned.

Source: Huffington Post, Marriage Problems That Lead To Divorce After Decades, Laura Seldon, Sep. 9, 2013

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