Financial considerations for divorcees over 50

California residents over 50 years old can likely remember a time when divorce was not nearly as common as it is today. Now, just under half of all marriages in America end in divorce, and many of these divorces include couples who have already celebrated their 50th birthdays. There are extra financial considerations for divorcees to consider when ending a marriage in their later years.


The marital home often becomes a point of contention during the divorce process. The sale of the house is often necessary, and a division of the proceeds occurs unless the spouses agree that one of them can take control of the home they shared. The spouse keeping the house should know that they will likely need to give ground on another financial matter to make up for taking the home.

Retirement accounts

Older divorcees will likely not be able to get around the effect that a divorce will have on retirement money. The main reason for this is that retirement planning before divorce proceedings involved one household. Once a divorce becomes final, accumulated pensions, savings and retirement accounts will have to be stretched across two households.

Spousal support

Marriages that last over 10 years in California warrant consideration for one divorcee paying spousal support to the other. The final decision rests with the court. A judge will consider factors like income and assets possessed by each spouse before deciding if one will provide monetary support to the other. In many cases, judges specify no end date for spousal support after a long-term marriage ends.

Social Security

Divorcees married for 10 years can receive Social Security benefits based on the employment record of an ex-spouse. These benefits are possible even if the ex-spouse remarries. Divorcees become eligible once they are 62 years old. The ex-spouse whose work record they wish to use must be eligible for Social Security benefits. Finally, the Social Security benefits the divorcee qualifies for with their own work record must be less than what they would receive with their ex-spouse’s record.

Divorces often bring financial complications to couples deciding to end a marital union, especially if they have been married for many years. A divorce attorney may provide the help needed to individuals contemplating a divorce.

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