You have probably heard that gray divorce — people who are 50 and older getting a divorce — is on the rise. The reason given is often that it’s a fairly new phenomenon, so the rate is increasing when other age groups have seen their rates level off. But is this true?
The reality is that gray divorce is certainly not a new idea. One legal professional claimed that these divorce cases had been showing up in her own practice for at least 20 years. The rate may still be going up, but this is not some brand new idea.
What is new is how common it is. The social stigma around divorce has been shifting for a long time. Many young people in 2020 haven’t even grown up in a world where divorce was looked down upon the way that it used to be. Older couples may be catching up with this change in ideals from when they were young, and they may now feel like they can finally get divorced to end unhappy marriages.
Life expectancy also continues to rise, in a general sense, and it is expected to keep doing so. While getting divorced at 50 is now considered “later” in life, it feels a bit earlier every time life expectancy clicks up another notch. When people are consistently living to 100 years old, will these types of divorces be even more common than they are today?
Gray divorce can be a bit more complicated, especially when dividing up assets, so it is important for all parties to understand the legal steps they can take to protect their interests and their future. An experienced advocate may be able to offer some important guidance.