Getting a divorce can be devastating at any age. Divorces between adults over the age of 50 have increased greatly over the last several decades in Pennsylvania. Most people at this age have planned for retirement for many years and wonder how they will be able to afford it after a divorce. There are several ways to prevent a divorce from affecting retirement.
Speaking to a financial advisor who specializes in retirement accounts is a good first step. A 401(k) may be subject to division in a divorce. It is important to be flexible when considering options during a divorce since it may be possible to keep a retirement account in exchange for allowing the other spouse to retain other marital assets.
It is also important to consider what alternative options are available regarding retirement plans. Social security payments are not considered community property in a divorce, but a person may still be able to receive benefits if his or her marriage lasted 10 years or longer. Pension plans, on the other hand, are considered community property. Some plans may offer a lump-sum payout, and it is important to consider what to do if this happens.
A divorce lawyer may be able to simplify the process of going through a high-asset divorce after age 50. In cases involving complex asset division, it is important to gather all the financial documents that are available because some spouses may attempt to hide assets.
Many people who are going through a gray divorce wonder if their retirement may be delayed. A lawyer may be able to help lessen the financial impact of divorce by negotiating a favorable settlement that allows the client to keep the assets that are the most important to him or her. If the marriage has lasted a long time, and one spouse has depended on the other for basic living expenses, an attorney may be able to ask a judge to award alimony.