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Things to Consider Before a Gray Divorce

“Gray divorce” is the common term for those over 50 divorcing. Although divorce is never easy, a gray divorce is often easier and less contentious than a divorce by those in their 30s and early 40s. However, there are often more things to take into consideration as an older couple divorcing.

Social Security and Retirement Accounts

Divorce changes your financial standing. It simply costs less for two people to live on two incomes in one house than those two people living separately. In most instances, you each keep your own Social Security payments. Social Security is not something that is ever split. However, if you are not yet drawing from it, you may want to speak with a financial advisor before claiming your benefits.

Retirement accounts are also not always equally divided. There are several factors that go into how a retirement account or multiple retirement accounts may be divided. There may even be a separate court order required to divide them without incurring tax penalties. One benefit of working with an experienced attorney in senior or gray divorce, is that they can help guide you on the best ways to avoid tax implications and still fairly divide the retirement accounts.


It is often surprising to older couples divorcing when we start to talk about alimony that a judge may award in Florida. Spousal support is based on length of marriage and one party’s ability to earn enough to sustain a lifestyle. With few working years left, it may be difficult for one spouse to earn enough to live comfortably, especially if one spouse has stayed at home with the children for most of the marriage.

If you are both retired, and one spouse had a higher paying job or worked longer during the marriage while the other raised children and took a significant break during their career, they may not have the same amount coming in through Social Security and retirement accounts. If that is your situation, you may be entitled to spousal support. Of course, if you made more, you may end up paying spousal support to your former spouse.

Family Considerations

No matter what age your children may be at the time of your divorce, you may have to factor them into your financial plans. For parents who pay for their children’s college, you will want the terms of the payments spelled out in the divorce paperwork. That way it is clear where the money comes from for each tuition payment. Additionally, if you or your spouse care for a parent, there may be some financial considerations to factor into your plans as well.

Wagstaff & Pitelis Are Your Experienced Gray Divorce Attorneys

If you are one of the many older couples looking for a gray divorce attorney in Pinellas County, call Wagstaff & Pitelis. Our knowledgeable team is ready to help you with mediation, collaboration or divorce through the courts. Call us today at (727) 584-8182 or fill out our contact form to schedule your initial consultation.