The number of individuals getting divorced who are age 50 and older has risen considerably in recent years. In fact, individuals in this age group are twice as likely to get divorced as they were 20 years ago. These divorces often involve marriages that have been 20, 30, or 40 years in length. As a result, there may be special considerations in the cases of these individuals.

For example, one or both parties in a so-called “gray divorce” may be retired or nearing retirement. Division of retirement and pension plans thus becomes very important, since it is likely to be a big source of income for these individuals in the near future. Likewise, Social Security benefits may be available to a spouse based on his or her spouse’s earnings record, depending on the length of the marriage and other circumstances. Spousal support also may be more of an issue in these divorce cases, particularly if the marriage was lengthy and one spouse traditionally stayed home and raised the children while the other spouse worked.

Insurance coverage is also likely to be a significant issue in individuals who are divorcing later in life. If one spouse has no access to insurance through an employer, there must be arrangements made for that spouse to have some sort of coverage, at least until he or she becomes eligible for Medicare. If a spouse must independently purchase insurance for a period of time, the amount of those premiums should be taken into account during the divorce, especially since those premiums are likely to be quite costly, and perhaps even out of reach of the spouse altogether.

The divorce lawyers at Pacific Northwest Family Law are eager to answer your questions and help you understand the ins and outs of filing for divorce, no matter what stage you may be at in your life. As your attorneys, we will focus on how best to represent your interests and achieve the goals that you wish to reach. We have handled countless divorce and family law proceedings over the years, and we will work with you to create the best strategy possible in your case. Call our offices at (509) 792-3044 and learn how we can help you with your Washington divorce or family law case.