Everything You Need to Know About Divorcing Over 60

Going through a divorce at any time in your life is difficult, but there may be added complications for those who choose to do it after 60. Take a look

According to the Office of National Statistics, over 60s are the fastest growing age group of divorcing couples. Often referred to as ‘silver splitters’, these couples have an average length of marriage almost three times that of their younger peers. This makes the process more difficult.

Despite the added difficulty, silver splitters shouldn’t be put off getting divorced and applying for a decree absolute. In this post, we’re going to discuss everything you need to know if you’re divorcing over 60 so you can avoid any complications that might arise.

Why Might a Couple Over 60 Get Divorced?

Before we discuss what difficulties you need to be aware of if you’re undergoing a divorce over 60, we’re going to briefly touch on the reasons why they’re so common.

One of the main reasons people over 60 get divorced is because their children have left home, and the couple has time to contemplate their future with their spouse. In many cases, this contemplation can lead over 60s to realise that they would be happier elsewhere.

With life expectancy increasing year-on-year, older couples are having to consider the possibility of living another two or three decades with their spouse. Not every relationship can stand the test of time.

More often than not, divorces over 60 are more amicable than those of younger couples as they lack the combustible event that usually tears relationships apart. It’s rare for an older couple to commit adultery for instance, or anything else that would usually end a marriage.

In most cases, the couple will actually defend each other through the proceedings having shared such a significant portion of their lives together.

What Issues Need to be Considered When You Divorce Over 60?

Despite divorces over 60 being amicable, the financial and emotional impact of these can be quite complicated. After being married for so long, your finances are tightly bound together and you’re used to having someone else around to care for you.

Here are some ways you can make the financial and emotional impact of a divorce over 60 easier:

Financial Issues

When considering the financial issues of divorcing your spouse, you need to think about how tied-together your assets are. For example:

  • How is the division of your home? Is it close to being mortgage-free?
  • What are your pension options and what’s the best way to share that asset?
  • Do you have adult children who still live in the family home who need financial support from you?
  • What are the tax implications for any investments you have together?
  • What is the income disparity between you and your spouse? Will you be able to afford going it alone?
  • What would be the cost of your future care?
  • Are your wills and inheritance planning tied together?

In order to be in control of these financial assets when you go through the divorce process, and the inevitable financial settlement, you’ll need a complete picture of your assets. The main pieces of information you’re likely to need are:

  • Property valuation
  • Your combined income from all sources
  • Bank accounts and savings
  • An expenditure budget
  • Details of all investments
  • A valuation of your Pension

Once you have this information, you then have to decide what portion of the finances you’ll need for the future. You’ll need enough money for future accommodation, for your retirement, to supplement your income, and to pay for anything else you might need.

It’s important to really think about what you’ll need for the future, so you don’t settle for anything less and end up struggling financially once you’ve divorced your spouse.

taxation of investment bonds

Emotional Issues

Once you’ve sorted through your finances, come to a settlement, and finalised your divorce, you might find that you’re having trouble dealing with the emotional impact of it.

When over 60s get divorced they can have feelings of depression, rage, fear, loneliness and sadness because their life has change dramatically from what it was before. These emotions can be difficult to handle especially due to the exhaustion of going through a divorce.

Dealing with these emotions isn’t always easy, but there are ways to alleviate some of the pressure and recover more quickly. You could try:

  • Seeing your physician and telling them how you feel.
  • Staying active so you’re not sat in the house thinking about your ex.
  • Keeping things simple – don’t overcomplicate your life too quickly, and just focus on getting over the divorce.
  • Revisiting any goals or dreams you had before you got married and start working towards them.
  • Being around friends and family who love and care for you to make the solitary days less lonely.
  • Joining a group for divorcees over 60 who know what you’re going through and can share the burden with you.

Above all, it’s important that you get dressed every morning, put a smile on your face and prove that you can live without your ex. Emotions tend to follow actions so if you face the day with a smile on your face and a pep in your step your optimism will grow with it.

Where Do You Go From Here?

In this post, we’ve managed to cover why someone might get divorced over 60, what the financial and emotional impacts might be, and how you can overcome them.

Once you’ve gotten over your divorce and adjusted to your new life, it’s up to you what you do from there. You could try dating again if you want to get back into a relationship, or you could try being alone and see how the single life treats you for a while.

The most important thing to remember is that life can begin at 60, 70 or 80. There is no age limit on starting a new life, and you can mould it in any way you want. Thank you for reading this post and good luck with your divorce.


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