Did you know that divorce rates across in Michigan and across the country tend to rise just after the holiday season? According to an article in the Chicago Tribune, some commentators have even nicknamed the period “Divorce Day,” referring to the days just following the end of Christmas and New Year’s. While spiking divorce rates after the holidays might not come as a complete shock, you may be surprised to learn that a number of the couples seeking divorce in the early days of January each year are adults aged 50 and older, with many of those individuals already in retirement. As an article in Forbes Magazine reminds us, this type of divorce has been given the name “gray divorce,” referring to seniors who decide to dissolve their marriages later in life.
If you are thinking about filing for divorce in Detroit in the coming weeks or months and are at or nearing the age of retirement, we have compiled some financial tips for you from Forbes and from AARP to help ensure that your affairs are in order and that you will be able to manage the economic pressures that often come with gray divorce.
Make a List of Your Necessary and Discretionary Living Expenses
Preparing a list of your expenses, including what you absolutely need as well as your discretionary expenses, should be important for anyone who is planning for divorce. It is particularly important for older adults to assess their budgets, however, given that many are already living from retirement incomes and do not have the ability to “bounce back” that younger divorcees tend to have. In your list, in addition to providing detailed information about all of your expenses, you should also list all sources of income, including retirement accounts, Social Security benefits, employment, alimony, and other possible assets.
Reassess Your Health Insurance Options
If you have been getting health insurance through your spouse for years or even decades, you may need to reassess your health insurance options after divorce. You should look into the coverage options available to you, and you should know that you may need to budget more money for health insurance than you paid previously if you are in the 50 to 65 age group or older.
Consider Going Back to Work
One of the reasons that couple who go through gray divorces struggle financially is that they are no longer working and do not have the ability to come back, financially, from a divorce as younger couples do. One of the ways to change this is to consider going back to work. If you and your spouse have been living on a fixed retirement income and have been sharing all household expenses, you should bear in mind that you will have to pay for all of those expenses on your own once you have separated and the divorce becomes final.
One of the ways to make up for the loss of income is to consider going back to work. You do not need to go back to the job you once had, working long hours and dealing with other emotionally and intellectually draining workplace issues. However, taking a more relaxed full-time or even part-time job can help you immensely once you are living on your own.
Reach Out to a Divorce Lawyer in Michigan
Are you thinking about filing for divorce? A Detroit divorce attorney can discuss your case with you today. Contact the law office of Paul J. Tafelski to learn more about the services we provide to residents throughout the Detroit area.