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Divorce risk not equal for all couples over 50

Spouses in Connecticut who are over 50 might be at a greater risk for divorce than in previous generations. Since 1990, the divorce rate for this age group has doubled. However, there are additional demographic factors that predict the longevity of a marriage.

Statistics report that 12 percent of couples who divorce after 50 have been married more than 40 years. Nearly 35 percent of divorcing couples in this age group have been married more than 30 years. However, first marriages are more likely to last than second or later marriages. Couples who are remarried are nearly three times more likely to get a divorce than those in first marriages. Marriages that have lasted at least 40 years are the least likely to end.

Financial security is another factor. Couples with assets worth more than $250,000 are almost 40 percent less likely to get a divorce than couples who have assets worth $50,000 or less. Factors that did not appear to affect the divorce rate among older adults were health, retirement, children leaving home or education levels.

However, poverty is an issue for older adults who are divorced. Around 11 percent of men and more than one-quarter of women who divorce after the age of 50 live in poverty. Among people over 50 who live together in relationships, only 4 percent live in poverty.

For this reason, older adults who are getting a divorce might want to be particularly mindful of their financial stability. Those who desire a quick divorce process might neglect to protect themselves financially or agree quickly to unfavorable terms. People should make sure they understand the ramifications of how they are dividing property as well. A divorce attorney could provide valuable guidance during the process.

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