Our Knoxville Lawyers Are Uniquely Equipped to Help with Your “Gray” Divorce

Our Knoxville Lawyers Are Uniquely Equipped to Help with Your “Gray” DivorceWhile divorces among almost every age group have decreased, gray divorce numbers continue to rise. A “gray divorce” is when a couple over the age of 50 chooses to divorce. Divorcing later in life can create some unique challenges for couples, whose needs are different from younger couples.

LaFevor & Slaughter is uniquely equipped to help with these issues because of our experience. Not only are we accomplished divorce attorneys, but we also handle estate planning, and have experience helping servicemembers. No matter what concerns you may have about the future, our Knoxville divorce lawyers can help.

Common concerns for Knoxville couples divorcing later in life

You may need a divorce lawyer to help you navigate the gray divorce process and ensure that you understand every aspect of your case. Here are five unique issues that a Knoxville divorce attorney can help you with when it comes to your gray divorce:

  1. Alimony: When an older couple splits, there is the possibility that one of the spouses may be unable to obtain the education, training, or experience to enter the workforce again. Therefore, if the spouse has spent most of their adulthood being a homemaker, stay at home parent, or has health issues preventing them from going back to work, they may need spousal support or alimony from their spouse for the remainder of their life.
  2. Retirement: A divorce can significantly change their retirement plans. However, an attorney will help you divide your retirement and pension accounts, ensuring that it is done fairly and accurately. This may require not only a QDRO, but the help of a financial planner.
  3. Changing or updating beneficiaries: As a couple who has been together for years or decades, you must likely have sat down with a lawyer and created an estate plan. At the time, you may have thought that you and your spouse would spend the rest of your lives together, meaning that you likely listed them as your beneficiary. Once your divorce is final, you will need to take the time to change or update your beneficiaries to ensure that your ex-spouse will no longer get everything you own, which one of our divorce lawyers can gladly assist you with.
  4. Dealing with wills and trusts: When you and your spouse created an estate plan, you may have created a joint will or trust. These documents provide details about what you and your spouse wish to do with your assets when you pass away. However, when you divorce, you will need to split the assets and create new wills and trusts, explaining who will get the remaining assets that you have. We can help here, too, by updating or amending an existing will or trust, or by he;ping you draft a new one.
  5. Health insurance: There is a high chance that you and your spouse have spent years sharing health insurance. Therefore, it can be difficult to learn in your 50s or 60s that you need to get your own health insurance plan if you are not old enough to qualify for Medicare. A divorce lawyer can help you research insurance information and find the best option that may work for you after your divorce.

Why are so many older couples splitting up?

There are many reasons why gray divorces occur, but the rate at which they are occurring is significant. According to the AARP, this “gray divorce revolution” is being driven by the Baby Boomers:

A new analysis of divorce data from 1990 to 2021 released in July by Bowling Green State University’s National Center for Family and Marriage Research found that divorce rates for those age 45 and over rose during that period, while rates dropped for those younger than 45. The most significant increase in divorce rates was among people 65 and older: The rate tripled from 1990 to 2021.

At these older ages, rates of divorce among women nearly quadrupled, according to the data….

Part of this phenomenon is the age at which the “Boomers” got married; they were much younger when they tied the knot (as compared to Gen X or Millennial couples), and couples who marry young are statistically more likely to get divorced. They are also more likely to get remarried – and second and third marriages have a greater divorce risk, too.

Other reasons for gray divorce include:

  • The couple has grown apart: After being together for several years or decades, individuals in a marriage can develop new interests, desires, or activities. As a result, they may begin to feel unhappy or bored in their marriage, causing them to seek a divorce.
  • Their children have grown up and left the nest: Some couples tend to get lost in the duties of parenthood. Therefore, when their children grow up and leave home, they realize they no longer have anything to talk or relate to each other about, resulting in a divorce.
  • They have serious financial disagreements: As time goes on in a marriage, individuals may begin to develop serious financial disagreements. These disagreements may include spending habits, saving habits, or money management habits. When couples feel that there is no solution to these disagreements or habits, they usually end up filing for a divorce.
  • One or both people in the relationship have been unfaithful: Regardless of the number of years a couple has been together, finding out that a spouse is cheating can destroy a marriage. It does not matter how many hardships or obstacles they have faced together. If an individual is caught being unfaithful, the trust may be completely broken, meaning that the relationship is completely irreparable.

If you are thinking about divorce and you’re worried about your future, reach out to the Knoxville divorce lawyers at LaFevor & Slaughter. We know and understand that the issues that arise with these types of divorces can lead to many complications in your life, which is why we are here to help you navigate each one of them successfully. All you have to do is fill out our contact form or call our office to schedule your consultation today.