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Things to consider if divorcing later in life.

People grow throughout the course of their relationships and sometimes they grow apart. If this does happen, there is no formula to calculate how long the process will take. Sometimes the priorities couples have when they are beginning a marriage change over the course of many years. Every divorce is unique, but they are rarely easy and more often than not they are very stressful. For some couples, the decision to divorce will come later on in their lives and this involves particular things you will want to consider.

How will you divide your accumulated assets?

If you and your partner have been married for many years, it is likely that you have combined and accumulated resources over that time. These resources can take many forms and are generally treated differently when it comes to their distribution.

Retirement

While retirement assets are often split relatively evenly, the process can be very complicated and is best done with the assistance of a legal professional. There may be separate legal procedures that need to be undertaken, but you may very well qualify for benefits like some tax exemptions, retirement plan contributions, or military benefits.

Homes

Like many shared objects, homes can take on a large amount of sentimental attachment. While this is valid and should be considered, it is important to remember that homes and property have a significant monetary value as well. Because of this, whoever does not take possession of that property will generally be compensated will other shared resources of an equal or similar value. If you do take possession of a home there are pros and cons that should be thoroughly considered.

Social Security

Following a divorce, you may be eligible for retirement benefits from Social Security if your marriage meets certain criteria defined by the Social Security Administration. You may also be able to collect survivor benefits from your deceased spouse's Social Security benefits if you are over 60 years old, you and your spouse were married for over 10 years, and you are not already entitled to benefits greater in value than the ones of your spouse.

Divorce later in life has become much more popular over recent years for many reasons and like any divorce it can be a stressful, complicated affair. While this is certainly not an exhaustive list of factors regarding the process, the aforementioned topics should be considered and discussed with a legal professional if you decide a divorce is best for you.

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