For more than 35 years, the Colorado attorneys at the The Law Offices of Rodger C. Daley and Associates have helped families navigate complex matters such as divorce and criminal defense. Our lawyers invest time, energy and resources in order to secure favorable outcomes for our clients. To schedule an appointment, call our office in Denver at 720-773-5708 or fill out the form below.

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What factors into a gray divorce?

Divorce at any stage of life can be a challenge, but there are unique hurdles that you will have to deal with, depending on your age. For example, younger divorcees are more likely to encounter child custody and support issues, while financial stability during retirement is often a bigger concern for ending things after decades of marriage. There also tend to be different factors that go into the decision to get a gray divorce. 

Gray divorce — which refers to divorce among those over the age of 50 — is becoming steadily more common in Colorado, even as the overall divorce rate continues to drop. Part of the reason for this rise is that the stigma around divorce is evolving over time. As divorce becomes more and more accepted, unhappy couples are realizing that walking away is often the best possible decision. There are several other factors that contribute to the rise in gray divorce, though. 

The kids are now adults 

Even when divorce seems like a good idea, some parents choose to put off filing while their children are still young. The reasons for this vary, including the desire to set a certain example for children. Once children reach adulthood, these parents often feel like they have the freedom to move forward with divorce. 

In other situations, children becoming adults is actually the catalyst for divorce. This is because a lot can change once the daily tasks of parenting no longer consume the couple. When the children are the only thing holding your marriage together, moving forward with divorce after they reach adulthood can be quite freeing. 

Successive divorces 

Another reason for a higher gray divorce rate is because some baby boomers who are nearing retirement already have at least one divorce under their belts. Research shows that second, third and fourth marriages are less likely to be successful than first marriages. Considering this, it makes sense that the divorce rate for those over the age of 50 who have already been divorced at least once is nearly three times higher than those who have never been divorced. 

While prenuptial agreements can be beneficial for every married couple, they are especially important if you have already been married. Prenups address things like division of marital assets, liabilities and more. There is no need to panic if you are in a successive marriage and did not get a prenup, though. A postnuptial agreement offers the same benefits as a prenup, but parties sign it after saying “I do.” 

Longer life expectancies and general dissatisfaction 

On average, men and women are both living longer than ever before. This means that, if you are in your 50s, you could still be looking at another 30 years of an unhappy marriage. Divorce becomes more appealing when considering this alongside other common issues in retirement, including: 

  • Loss of separate routines 
  • Change in employment 
  • Loss of income 

There is no age limit on divorce. However, there are some unique issues you need to be aware of when going through a gray divorce. Dividing retirement accounts and preserving financial stability are typically among the top priorities of those divorcing later in life. 

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