Facing possible financial strain re property division in divorce

In Maryland and throughout the United States, more and more people are getting divorced beyond age 50. Gray divorce has been highlighted in the media with stars and well-known public figures, such as Al Gore and Danny DeVito untying marital knots later in life. Many people in their late 50s and 60s are already retired or nearing retirement, and property division in gray divorce can really put a strain on finances.

When older couples divorce, existing funds from retirement plans, pensions, 401K, etc. will likely be divided between spouses. The process may include writing a Qualified Domestic Relations Order, which specifically addresses a former spouse's shared interests in such plans. To protect one's rights and best interests, it's often best to seek experienced assistance when writing or reviewing a QDRO.

Regardless what led to a particular marital demise (for many older couples, it seems to be the simple fact that spouses often grow apart and realize they have nothing left in common once their kids are grown and out of the house), moving forward toward a successful future undoubtedly includes securing one's financial stability. Many retirees live on half the incomes they had when working, which would obviously be reduced to much less if divided with a former spouse. IRA transfers and divisions may further complicate gray divorce situations because of tax implications and possible penalties.

Since property division matters are often quite complex, many Maryland residents choose to act alongside experienced family law representation when heading to divorce court. An attorney can protect a client's rights and best interests while seeking a fair and agreeable settlement on his or her behalf. Experienced representation is often the key to a successful outcome.

Source: CNBC, "A costly 'gray divorce' can upend your retirement plans", Tim Sobolewski, June 21, 2017