While half of all marriages end in divorce, people over 50 have been turning to divorce with more frequency for the past couple of decades.

Gray divorce, a term for when older people divorce, presents unique challenges for those over 50. These include more property, significant retirement accounts, more entangled finances, and older children. They may also have significant medical needs or even memory-related conditions. All these circumstances make gray divorce different from a traditional separation or divorce. 

It is important to understand the unique dynamics of gray divorce in Bergen County, NJ, versus a more traditional separation.  If you’re currently facing a gray divorce and want to discuss your options, contact a dedicated Bergen County divorce lawyer. 

A gray divorce will differ from a traditional divorce in several ways. Here are some issues or concerns that are more prominent in gray divorces:

Retirement or Pension Accounts

If one spouse was the primary earner, the other may be entitled to part of their spouse’s retirement or pension. Ideally, the divorce will recognize both spouses’ contributions to the marriage and their financial needs in the future.

Medical Insurance

Older individuals likely have more medical needs than younger individuals. If one spouse received medical coverage through the other spouse’s job or status, this can be an area of concern.

Spousal Support

Spousal support, or alimony, is usually temporary. However, in New Jersey, it can be ordered permanently in marriages lasting over 20 years. 

Needs of Adult Children

Child support generally won’t be awarded for adult children. However, if the children attend college, the parents may still be required to pay certain expenses. 

Relationships With Family Members

When a younger couple divorces, the main concern may be how minor children will be cared for after the separation. In a gray divorce, familial concerns may be different. You may be concerned about preserving good relationships among family members for the sake of family traditions, adult children, and even grandchildren.

What Are the Reasons for Gray Divorce?

In addition to the unique dynamics of gray divorces, there are also various reasons why older married couples seek divorce. 

Some reasons for divorcing are unique to older couples and include the following:  

  • Empty nest syndrome. Some couples find that while caring for their children, they drift apart. This emotional distance can come into sharp focus when the children leave home. Some couples ultimately decide to divorce.
  • Retirement. Retirement can be a huge life change for a person and a couple. The retired person may need to seek a new purpose or direction in life, which can cause some couples to drift further apart. 
  • Grief or loss. Older people may be more likely to have suffered grief or loss, such as the loss of a parent, sibling, or even child. Grief and loss can lead some couples to separate.
  • Isolation or loneliness. Older people may become isolated or lonely as they leave jobs or lose friends and family members. For some couples, this loneliness leads to dissatisfaction with each other. 

However, older couples also divorce for many of the same reasons that couples of any age divorce: infidelity, abuse, or incompatibility.

An Experienced Bergen County Divorce Lawyer Can Help With the Unique Dynamics of Gray Divorce

Getting divorced as an older person can be daunting, especially if you’ve been married for a long time. You likely have serious concerns about your financial stability, medical issues, home, etc. 

Skilled divorce attorneys understand the unique circumstances of someone in a gray divorce and can be here for you throughout the process. They can also help you protect your financial future.

Contact the Bergen County Family and Divorce Law Firm of Arons & Solomon Divorce Lawyers for more help

Contact the experienced family attorneys at Arons & Solomon Divorce Lawyers today for legal assistance. Visit our law office in Bergen County or give us a call at (201) 487-1199 to schedule a free consultation with our team.

Bergen County Law Office
1 University Plaza Dr #400, Hackensack, NJ 07601, United States