In the three or more decades that you’ve been married, you’ve likely encountered all sorts of challenges in your relationship and in your family life, in general. Raising your children, perhaps helping your now-adult kids raise their children, going through career changes, financial crises and other life circumstances through the years have made you who you are today.  

It may also have helped you determine that your marriage is no longer sustainable. In fact, there has been a tremendous increase in divorce for people age 50 and over here in Pennsylvania and across the country in the past 10 to 20 years. On one hand, you may wonder why anyone who has already survived 25 or 30 years of marriage would want to start proceedings that involve having to resolve legal issues, financial issues and property issues. On the other hand, you may be able to relate to those who are considering doing just that.  

Factors that often prompt late-life divorce      

Your marital journey is unique; yet you might have several things in common with other couples your age. The following list shows issues that are often key factors for those who decide to divorce later in life:  

  • Many people in their 50s, 60s or beyond have been married and divorced, then remarried. People in this category are two and a half time more likely to divorce in their golden years than those who were only married once. 
  • The less wealth you have, the greater the chance you will divorce late in life, or so they say. People who are currently in marriages that are enduring serious financial strain may simply not be able to withstand the pressure.
  • Many older people say they married for the wrong reasons when they were young. 
  • Sometimes, infidelity plays a part in the breakdown of a marriage, although many older people contend that their affairs were symptoms, not causes of their marital problems.  

Whatever the reasons you decide to divorce, if you’re older than 50, you may encounter certain issues you wouldn’t have faced had you divorced at a younger age. Part of you may be longing to leave the past behind and move on to a new lifestyle while the other part recognizes that your decision to do so may have implications regarding taxes, your retirement, your house and other important issues. An experienced family law attorney can help you protect your interests as you lay the groundwork for a new future.