Divorce after 50: how your retirement could be affected

| Jun 1, 2021 | Divorce |

People of all ages in Honolulu get divorced. Whether they have been married for three years or 30, there are no guarantees that a couple will stay together for life.

But your priorities in divorce can differ dramatically, depending on your age. As a younger person for whom retirement is decades away, your retirement savings may not matter as much as arranging fair child custody and child support. If you are in your 50s or 60s, however, the fate of the retirement account you and your spouse started is probably going to be vitally important to you. Will you be able to afford retirement after divorce?

Splitting up retirement resources

Even if the retirement account is only in one of your names, the funds can be divided between you using a legal order called a qualified domestic relations order or QDRO. By issuing a QDRO, the judge overseeing your divorce orders the person who has the account in their name to provide a portion of the money with their ex.

You may also be wondering about Social Security, especially if your spouse was the sole breadwinner. If you were married at least ten years and are over age 62, you may be entitled to spousal benefits based on your ex’s work history, even though the two of you are no longer married. However, if you get married again, that spousal benefit goes away.

Finally, like most states, Hawaii is an equitable distribution state in divorce. Each spouse is entitled to a fair portion of the marital property, which includes most things the couple acquired during the marriage. That portion, combined with a share of the retirement savings and Social Security benefits, can help you enjoy retirement after divorce.

A comfortable retirement after divorce is possible

Your retirement will be different without your ex, but working with the right divorce attorney should help ease your worries about your long-term financial needs.