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Will Gray Divorce Ruin My Retirement?

 Posted on November 21, 2023 in Uncategorized

Wheaton Gray Divorce LawyerOnce people reach their sixties, they know that their working years are almost over. If they have worked and put away money every month to plan for their retirement, it can feel like they are about to be rewarded for their many years of hard work. However, everyone has different retirement plans: some people work for large companies and are offered packages that include a matching program (the company deposits the same amount into a fund as the employee every month) and stock options, while other people might only have a 401K.

In some cases, one spouse is given a generous retirement package by their employee and the other spouse is not, and the couple might decide to depend on that one plan for their shared future. This arrangement works for many couples, but what happens if a couple gets a divorce? If you find yourself wondering whether you are better off staying in an unhappy marriage to ensure a comfortable retirement, a DuPage County divorce attorney can have an honest conversation and help get you the answers you need to make an informed decision.

How Rare Is Gray Divorce?

The short answer is not at all. According to a report from 2017, divorce among Americans who are at least 50 years old has nearly doubled since the 1990s. There are several likely reasons for this.

One is longer life expectancy. As people live longer than they used to, their expectations for their final decades have changed. Rather than thinking about your sixties with pessimism, people consider it a time to look forward to when they can finally relax and enjoy life without needing to work. This sometimes leads people to take stock of what they want to keep in their lives and what they would rather change. This might explain why more and more people are considering divorce later in life. 

Another reason is more focus on self-care. A topic that emerged a lot during the COVID-19 pandemic was the importance of self-care. There is more awareness in America about how taking care of yourself can help you take care of everyone around you. With this new understanding, people may be considering their own best interests more than they used to.

How Will Divorce Affect My Retirement?

In most cases, you will likely need to divide your retirement savings with your ex during divorce. Since Illinois is an equitable distribution state rather than an equal distribution state, the court will try to determine how large a portion of your retirement assets each of you should keep to make sure that neither of you ends up at a significant disadvantage financially.  

In some cases, there might be a prenuptial agreement that has specific instructions for what should happen with retirement funds but in general, whatever money has been saved for retirement will be equitably shared by the spouses.

Contact a Kane County, IL Gray Divorce Attorney

When you get divorced, you might find that financial matters are stressful. When your divorce happens around the time of your retirement, this can be even more significant. However, you should not remain in an unhappy marriage feeling trapped by your financial concerns. An experienced Kendall County, IL divorce lawyer will be able to guide you through this complicated process so you can open up a new chapter in your life. Call Divorce Over 50 - Goostree Law Group at 630-634-5050 today to schedule a free consultation.

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