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What’s Gray Divorce?

Gold border around a white square that says “What’s Gray Divorce” in black letters.Sometimes divorce after 60 is referred to as “gray divorce.” Gray divorce is becoming more prevalent and presents some unique considerations.  Freed Marcroft’s divorce attorneys are experienced with the issues and questions that often loom large in gray divorce, and that affect spouses’ futures in ways that younger couples may not face.

Read on to learn more.

If you’re a senior considering a divorce, you’re not alone. According to one study by Bowling Green State University, the divorce rate for U.S. residents ages 50 and older has doubled in the past twenty years. Here’s what you need to know when considering a divorce:

Gray Divorce & Alimony

Connecticut courts more often provide for alimony, or spousal support, in long term marriages. On the other hand, Connecticut law provides an interplay between alimony and property division. In other words, if a couple is retired, financial may be handled primarily through distributing the assets they already have.  In either case, it’s important to prepare for a conversation about alimony and whether and how it might inform your future plans.

Read: Alimony: The Comprehensive Connecticut Guide

Read:  Lessons From A Porch: the Rise of Divorce Later in Life

Retirement Funds & Gray Divorce

Retirement assets make up a significant portion of many Connecticut families’ financial portfolio.  The most common misconception out there is that property gets divided 50/50 in Connecticut.  In fact, there is no default that property must be divided 50/50.

Connecticut is an “equitable distribution” and an “all property” state.  “Equitable” does not mean equal, or even half, but rather what the Superior Court considers fair.  “All property” means that the courts have jurisdiction over all the property that both spouses have, marital and separate.

Typically, retirement assets are held in only one spouse’s name, so it’s important to know that In a divorce, we can transfer those assets to the other spouse.

Read: How Are Retirement Plans Divided in Connecticut Divorces?

Read:  Grace and Frankie, Silver Divorce, and (Special Guest and Pop Culture Wiz) Meghan’s Mom

Adult Children & Divorce

Although your children may be adults, the divorce may still affect your relationship with your children – both personally and financially. For instance, if you and your spouse are providing financial support for an adult child, you’ll need to discuss the terms of this support during the divorce. You’ll also need to be prepared to talk to your kids about the divorce and its implications for your future.  Even though they are adults, your children will have their own emotions around your divorce.  Support your relationship by keeping your legal discussions between you and your divorce attorney.

Read: Gray Divorces: 5 Things Adult Children of Divorce Should Know

Update Your Estate Plan

Your estate plan may include your spouse as your executor, or it may divide your assets in a way you wouldn’t want after the divorce is complete. Make sure the lawyer who handles your estate plan knows about your divorce.

Next Steps

For more information about Connecticut divorce and family law, check out our Divorce Information and Facts.

If you have questions or want to learn more about how our team of divorce attorneys can help you with your divorce or post-judgment issue, please contact us either here or by phone at 860-530-4221.

Written by Meghan Freed