Tag Archives: divorce property division

What Should Spouses Over the Age of 50 Expect During Divorce?

DuPage County grey divorce lawyerWhile getting a divorce at any age can be one of the most challenging life changes you will ever face, when you decide to get a divorce at age 50 or older, the situation can be even more complicated and difficult. How will your older sons and daughters react? What will happen with your retirement accounts? What about health insurance? How will you be able to start over at such an older age? There are many issues to consider, and that is the main reason finding an experienced divorce attorney is critical to your success.

Distinct Differences When Divorcing After 50

While many of the usual issues considered during divorce are also relevant to a divorce late in life, there are some actions that need to be approached differently or with extra caution when you are 50 or older. Major differences to take into account when divorcing after 50 include:

  • Development of an Asset Inventory: In many cases, only one spouse will have a comprehensive understanding of the marital assets possessed by a married couple. For the fairest results during a divorce, both sides must have an in-depth knowledge of their assets. After all, by 50, you and your spouse have probably been accumulating property for many years. This includes life insurance policies, retirement accounts, and the house.

  • Understanding of the Retirement Accounts: As you approach retirement age, you are going to want to have all your finances sorted out in such a way that your golden years remain golden. While you will not have the retirement you planned with your spouse, and you might not get everything you were expecting during retirement after the divorce, there are ways to fairly divide the assets in retirement accounts. When dividing these assets, a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) should be used to avoid any penalties or taxes that would come with withdrawal of funds before reaching retirement age.

  • Ensuring Health Insurance Coverage: At your age, having good health is particularly important, so you will need to make sure you have coverage. If you are not yet qualified for Medicare, your options may be limited to using COBRA to stay on your spouse’s insurance until you find other solutions, insurance through your current employer (if you have one), or insurance through the Healthcare Marketplace. If you would prefer to stay on your spouse’s insurance indefinitely, a legal separation might be a preferable option instead of divorce.

  • Attainment or Maintenance of a Life Insurance Policy: You and your spouse are both not getting any younger. It is just as important—if not more important—to get life insurance policies figured out upon divorce as it is while married, especially if one spouse will be paying spousal maintenance or child support. While term life insurance is not taken into account during divorce, permanent life insurance is counted as a marital asset and must be dealt with as such. In particular, if you or your spouse do not already have a permanent life insurance policy, you or your spouse might want to ask for one in divorce to protect the rights to alimony, child support, and retirement/pension benefits if a spouse dies. If either spouse already has a permanent life insurance policy with the other spouse as the beneficiary, you are free to change the beneficiary of the policy, unless ordered otherwise by the judge in your case.

  • Deciding What to Do With the House: If you are not an empty-nester yet, you may want to continue living in your marital home after your divorce. However, you will need to be prepared for the day when your children leave the home. If you have no children at home, you may want to consider what you will end up doing with the house. Upkeep at your age can be both taxing and expensive, and if your house is not paid off, you may struggle with mortgage payments, property taxes, and other expenses.

  • Be Prepared for the Job Market If Necessary: As you approach retirement, getting a job can become much more difficult. If being divorced will put you in a financial position that will require you to get back onto the job market, do not be surprised to hear that you are “overqualified” or other rejections that might be related to your age. Conversely, if you feel at a disadvantage due to your lack of training or education, you may want to ask for your spouse to contribute toward your professional development. If your spouse agrees to spousal support that will help pay for your tuition at a local school, for instance, then you will be able to receive the necessary training to start a new job. This will make it much easier for you to manage the finances for yourself without your spouse.

Contact a Wheaton Grey Divorce Attorney

As you can see, there are many unique challenges facing people who wish to get divorced after the age of 50; however, you do not have to face this difficult decision on your own. Our DuPage County divorce lawyers can help you every step of the way, no matter how complicated your divorce gets due to the late stage in your life. For a free consultation, reach out to us at 630-871-1002.

Sources:

https://www.thebalance.com/divorce-after-50-5-things-to-consider-2388813

https://www.investopedia.com/personal-finance/mistakes-avoid-when-divorcing-over-50/

https://www.policygenius.com/life-insurance/how-does-life-insurance-work-during-a-divorce/

 

What Mistakes Should I Avoid in an Illinois Divorce?

Wheaton, IL divorce attorneyIf you are facing a divorce, you are likely to be plagued with feelings of doubt and uncertainty. While there is no “correct” way to go about the process of ending your marriage, you will want to be sure to address the various legal issues between you and your spouse in a responsible manner. The many decisions that must be made about matters such as the division of assets, marital debt, spousal support, and parental responsibilities could lead to you feel overwhelmed. Although you may be eager to resolve these matters and get the divorce process over with, it is strongly advised to carefully think out every action you take. If certain issues are handled improperly, you may face serious financial repercussions, and your relationship with your children could be negatively affected. During your divorce, it is important to avoid these mistakes:

Being Dishonest

Attempting to hide marital assets, providing your spouse with false financial information, or withholding knowledge from your ex, their lawyer, or the court could result in serious consequences. You may be penalized if you are found to be hiding money or other property, and if it is discovered that you are lying, a judge may consider this behavior when making decisions about property division or child custody. Ultimately, it is best to be as open and honest as possible during the divorce process.

Letting Your Emotions Control You

The dissolution of your marriage is the end of your partnership with your ex. The thought of moving forward into single life can be stressful and overwhelming, especially if you will also be spending less time with your children. Because of these changes, you may struggle with sadness, anger, depression, guilt, and a variety of other emotions. However, it is best to approach your divorce with a professional mindset. Putting emotions aside when addressing the legal and practical concerns of ending your marriage will help you make sure you can start your post-divorce life off on the right foot.

Not Focusing on Your Children

As you concentrate on the multitude of issues that must be addressed during your divorce, you should make sure that you are taking the time to meet your children’s needs. They are also likely to be overwhelmed with the changes that are occurring in their lives, and they are probably uncertain about where they will live and how their relationship with both parents will be affected. Explaining the situation to them in an age-appropriate manner, addressing their concerns, and emphasizing that you love them and will always be there for them can help make the divorce process easier for them and prepare your family for success once your divorce is complete.

Refusing to Compromise

Just like marriage, the key to achieving an amicable divorce is being able to reach agreements with your spouse. Working together throughout the divorce process and agreeing to compromise and find mutually agreeable solutions can make the situation much easier to manage. Mediation and collaborative law are different forms of dispute resolution that can help you and your spouse reach a middle ground.

Contact a DuPage County Family Law Attorney

A divorce can be a complex process that may take a significant amount of time to conclude. To ensure that your rights and best interests are protected throughout the legal process, it is crucial to work with an experienced attorney. At the Andrew Cores Family Law Group, we can provide you with dedicated representation throughout the divorce process, and we will work with you to reach a positive resolution to your case. To schedule a free consultation with one of our knowledgeable Wheaton divorce lawyers, contact our office at 630-871-1002.

 

Source:

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/common-divorce-mistakes_b_6057888

 

Who Is Responsible for Marital Debt in an Illinois Divorce?

shutterstock_562619533Many couples fight about finances throughout the course of their marriage. Money issues and especially debt can wreak havoc on a marriage, and in many cases, financial concerns can be a significant factor in the decision to get a divorce. Sometimes, one spouse will rack up huge amounts of credit card debt without the other spouse even knowing. Divorcing couples may wonder what will happen if one or both spouses have incurred a large amount of debt. Illinois divorce laws allow for equitable distribution of marital property, and this includes the division of debts. However, exactly how marital debt is to be divided depends on each situation, since every divorce is unique.

Marital Assets and Debts

Marital debt refers to any debts that a couple accumulates while they are married. These debts may include a mortgage, credit cards, vehicle loans, and student loans. During divorce, marital debts will be divided between the spouses according to Illinois’ equitable distribution laws. Credit cards, even if they are only in one spouse’s name, are still considered marital debt that the court will divide.

The court will review several factors to determine which spouse should be responsible for certain debts. For example, one spouse may have been the primary “breadwinner” of the family, and if they earn a higher salary, they may be better able to pay debts. On the other hand, if one spouse has been a stay-at-home parent for many years, they may have a lower income-earning potential after the divorce, and large amounts of debt could be financially crippling for them.
In general, marital debt is subject to equitable division, just like assets. In order to be as “equitable” as possible, one spouse may take on more of the marital debt, but in return, they may receive more marital assets to make up the difference. However, even if a portion of the debt is assigned to one spouse, they may choose not to make payments on it. Creditors are not legally obligated to follow a judge’s orders in a divorce case, and they may begin the collections process against either spouse. This means one spouse can be held responsible for any jointly held debt, such as a loan or credit card that they co-signed with the other spouse. Interest and penalties may apply to this debt as well. In order to avoid the possibility of one spouse being held responsible for the other’s debts, spouses should ensure that one spouse is removed from any joint accounts.

Taking Responsibility

Ideally, with the help of their respective attorneys or through mediation, divorcing spouses can work out an agreement on how to divide their marital debt. Options may include continuing to share the debt or dividing the debts so each partner takes responsibility for their own debts. In these cases, the spouses will not need to come up with a large sum of money to pay off the debts immediately. However, this can also be somewhat risky, since a person’s credit score may be negatively affected if the other party decides not to or is unable to pay off his or her share of the debts. Ultimately, the best option is to simply pay off any outstanding debts prior to completing the divorce. This method may be challenging, but it provides benefits in the long run by allowing both parties to start their new lives debt-free.

Contact a Wheaton, IL Division of Marital Debt Attorney

Amassing a large amount of debt can weigh heavily on someone, especially during a divorce. In Illinois, marital debt is considered marital property and therefore subject to division. If you are concerned about what will happen to you and your spouse’s debt post-divorce, a knowledgeable DuPage County divorce lawyer at the Andrew Cores Family Law Group will advise you on the best way to reach a positive resolution. To schedule a free consultation, call 630-871-1002 today.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=075000050K503