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A financial guide for divorce after 50

Gray divorce, which refers to divorce among people age 50 or older, is on the rise in the United States. In fact, according to studies, people over the age of 50 are now the most likely age group to get a divorce. Gray divorcees in Delaware can take some steps to protect themselves financially when their marriages end.

Review your accounts

Since Delaware is not a community property state, a judge assumes responsibility for determining how much money each spouse gets after the divorce becomes final. Reviewing your accounts at the beginning of the divorce and then immediately after the divorce gives you a good idea about how much money you have. Rolling over investments, refinancing loans and opening new accounts takes time, but it’s a necessary step in untangling your finances.

Review your beneficiaries

Most people list their spouse as the primary beneficiary on their life insurance and retirement accounts. Divorce decrees don’t include beneficiary designations, which means that reviewing and updating them is your responsibility. You may not want to leave your retirement and life insurance to your former spouse.

Review your spending

Depending on your career plans for the latter years of your life, your divorce creates the need for you to review your spending habits. Going from two incomes to one means that you’ll likely have less money to spend on luxuries and activities. Once you see how you’re spending the majority of your money, you can set up a new budget.

Setting your budget

Getting used to living on one income is hard, especially if you’ve spent decades as part of a dual-income household. Consider all your needs, including housing, food, medicine and other necessities when setting your budget.

Being informed about the amount of money you had before your divorce allows you to determine how much you’ll have after your divorce. The change to your financial status is scary, but following these tips can alleviate a lot of that stress.