The number of older couples getting divorced throughout the United States has been steadily increasing. According to a study by the National Center for Family & Marriage Research at Bowling Green State University in Ohio, the divorce rate among people 50 and older has doubled between 1990 and 2010. During this same period, the divorce rate for the general population has remained relatively stable. Of all the divorces in 2010, couples aged 50 and older accounted for 25% of the divorce.
The study posits several reasons for the increase in divorces for older couples. First, there are a growing number of adults who are remarried, who are more likely pursue divorce. Second, divorce has become more common and socially accepted. Third, as a result of increased labor participation, more women have the economic autonomy to support themselves outside of marriage. And finally, people are living longer, which means that marriages are less likely to end as a result of death.
The increase in the number of older couples divorcing means that the divorces can be particularly complicated when the couples have been married for a long period. Usually the longer a couple is married, the more assets and wealth a couple accumulates and has to divide in a divorce. When going through the divorce process, older couples can have a variety of assets to divide, including pensions, 401(k)s, stocks, IRAs, and Social Security benefits.
Divorces in older couples can have significant ramifications, especially if one spouse is economically disadvantaged. For this reason, it is important to have an experienced divorce attorney who can advise you on your legal rights to marital property and on how to protect your property.
Options for Married Couples Looking to End Marriages
In Ohio, married couples looking to end their marriage have several different options. One option is dissolution, which is known as no-fault divorce. Dissolution allows a couple to amicably enter into an agreement to terminate a marriage and to divide property or allocate parental rights. Not all marriages, however, can be resolved amicably and sometimes couples have legitimate disputes over personal property or personal issues. In this situation, a party may petition the court to terminate the marriage through a divorce proceeding.
Another option is a legal separation, which allows a couple to legally remained married while living separate and apart. Finally, some couples choose to engage in a collaborative divorce process, which is a guided negotiation process designed to resolve a dispute without the court.
Contact a Cleveland Divorce Attorney Today
If you have questions regarding the divorce process in Ohio, an experienced Cleveland divorce attorney can help answer all your questions. Laubacher & Co. employs a team of knowledgeable divorce attorneys who have extensive experience helping individuals analyze their situations. Whether it is a legal separation or a divorce, our divorce attorneys will work with you to develop a cost-effective and creative plan to meet your needs.
Contact one of our experienced Cleveland, Ohio divorce attorneys for a free initial consultation. Call us at 440-356-5700 or visit with one of our attorneys at 20525 Center Ridge Road Suite 626, Cleveland, OH 44116.