Divorce When You Are Over 50 - Planning for Financial Security

Divorce by nature causes financial problems.  Divorce for people over 50 – known as “gray divorce” - can be a full blown financial crisis.  On average, the gray divorced will end up having only 1/5 of the assets of gray married couples.  Therefore, it is crucial that people over 50 begin  preparing a plan to deal with the financial fall out before and during the divorce.   

In my experience, people facing a gray divorce can be overwhelmed with the anxiety brought on by the financial stress.  Often one spouse will need to return to the workplace after a divorce, sometimes after a long absence from the workforce. After years of saving for retirement, suddenly retirement becomes a less secure goal. For spouses who are not financially savvy, the problem is compounded by a lack of knowledge.  All of this anxiety can cause people to make poor decisions about their future.   For example, a person might overvalue keeping their home due to the peace and security it offers them, or might drain a 401K to provide all the money necessary to avoid changes in life style. 

Getting help from financial experts before and during the divorce can help empower people to make informed decisions about their financial future and replace anxiety with confidence in a financial plan.   Working with financial experts like CDFAs and retirement investors before and during their divorce is a must.  

At the same time that people are dealing with these difficult financial issues, they are also facing the expense of divorce.  Most people getting divorced in their 50s cannot afford to spend tens of thousands on attorneys.  Fortunately, recent changes in the law can really help people to avoid astronomical legal fees while still getting the legal protection they need.   In the past, attorneys were required to handle divorces from start to finish.  Today, attorneys can be retained for limited and specific purposes at any point in time.  This change means that people are no longer at the mercy of attorneys when it comes to the cost and direction of their divorce. 

Cleland Collaborative Solutions allows people to take advantage of this change in the law.  My mediation service manages the divorce process so that people have available to them all of the legal help they want, and no more.  Some people don’t want an attorney. Others just need to have on demand access to an attorney so they can ask questions or get help with the paperwork.  My clients are therefore in control of the costs.  I also provide people with financial experts that can help them to make smart decisions as they move to a post-divorce future.  The result is a divorce process in which people are provided all of the expert guidance they need at a fraction of the cost of having an attorney handle the entire divorce. 

In addition to managed mediation services, we also guide people through court based divorce and collaborative practice.  Because people have so many divorce options to choose from today, Cleland Collaborative Solutions offers people a free one hour consultation to help them make a smart decision about how they can best handle their divorce.  No matter what option you choose, Cleland Collaborative Solutions can help you.     


Categories: Other Musings