There is no way to predict with 100% accuracy which marriages will last a lifetime and which will not. In certain demographics, the current divorce rate appears to be on the rise. People in Maryland and elsewhere throughout the country who are age 50 and older are filing for divorce more often than spouses in younger age groups.
What issues are driving the increased divorce rate?
While every marriage is unique, there are a number of issues to which many people in the 50 and beyond age group can relate. The following list includes several factors that may have an impact on the rising rate of divorce for baby boomers and their elders:
- Increased life expectancy
- Financial independence among women
- Lack of companionship after children are grown and on their own
People typically live longer today than they might have in the past. This creates a natural extension in marriage longevity, and some couples simply determine that their spousal relationships are no longer compatible, especially during the “empty nest” years of their lives. Also, women tend to be better able to provide for their own financial needs in modern society, which may be another driving force behind the increased later-in-life divorce rates throughout the country.
Complex issues in divorce between spouses over 50
Younger couples who divorce often have children at home, which means they must resolve multiple child custody or child support issues in order to achieve a settlement. With older spouses, however, children are likely to be grown and on their own. The central focus of proceedings shifts and often includes property division matters, especially financial issues, such as retirement benefits, pension, investment issues or estate planning topics.
An older spouse who is planning to file for divorce will want to be fully aware of Maryland property division laws. He or she will also want to organize his or her other financial statements and important documents before heading to court.