The Gray Divorce

by Leslee J. Newman, CFLS, Family Law Attorney

Although divorce rates in the United States have seen a decrease in the last decade, divorce rates for couples over 50 have doubled. According to U.S. Census Bureau data, in 2010, one out of every 20 people in the U.S. who divorced was over the age of 65!   Now, with the retirement of the “Baby Boom” generation (persons born between 1946 and 1967), the numbers of divorcing seniors is expected to escalate.  This phenomenon is often referred to as “gray divorce.”

Some reasons for this increase in gray divorce include the following:

  • There’s no longer a social stigma for seniors divorcing.
  • Seniors are living longer and are generally healthier.
  • Our culture promotes happiness.

A few years ago, a Chicago area billboard advertised divorce with a message that life was too short to be miserable.

Are you a senior and contemplating divorce? Have you helped a parent, colleague or friend who was in their 50s, 60s, or older get through their divorce? Does it make sense financially for a senior married couple to divorce?