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How to prevent divorce from severely damaging retirement

Finances will come to the forefront in any Florida divorce. Much has been discussed about so-called gray divorce with a growing number of people 50 and over choosing to end a marriage. The number has doubled in the last three decades. This has led to people thinking about their retirement and how it will be funded. There are steps to get a handle on finances for retirement. Knowing them is important as the process moves forward.

Recalculating income and expenditures is always imperative. Research from Boston College states that there is a dramatic increase in people being in financial jeopardy when they retire after a divorce. Aspects such as establishing a new residence and having costs that were once shared suddenly doubling are two examples. More than one-third of divorced people who took part in a Fidelity Investments survey said they struggled financially five years after the case was completed. Having a budget that addresses inevitable factors can be key.

People are not obligated to retire if they want to and need to work. Even a person who was once a homemaker will likely have jobs available. This naturally depends on education, experience and skills. However, there are benefits to finding a job, especially for those who are not yet at retirement age and cannot count on spousal support to make ends meet. It can help with maintaining a reasonable lifestyle comparable to what the person had during the marriage. Health coverage is also a consideration. Social Security could help, but it might be wise to delay using it to get as much spousal support as possible. The duration of the marriage will determine if a person can receive Social Security from the spouse’s benefit. If it was for a minimum of 10 years, this can be done.

A non-working spouse is unlikely to have a retirement account like an IRA. Therefore, establishing one prior to the completion of the divorce can be a good idea. Finally, since Florida real estate will generally have substantial value selling a marital residence could bring in profit and help the parties financially. Retaining the property could be untenable. Selling it can benefit both sides.

Getting a divorce can be complicated regardless of the time of life. For people who are at or near retirement age, divorce can be a scary prospect. Being financially prepared and understanding how to go about that preparation may require legal advice. A law firm that is experienced with family law and divorce might be able to help.