When Your Marriage Won’t Survive Your Golden Years

The older you are, the more impactful financial matters can be. To protect your financial interests, you must stay on top of your needs going forward. If you have already retired and are on Social Security, you might now be on a fixed income. Pensions and other investments are excellent ways to save for retirement but they, too, constitute a fixed income in most cases. Some hear the term fixed income and don't understand the limitations it places on seniors. For those unable to work due to age or illnesses, being on a fixed income can feel like a trap. Depending on how much you get each month, you might be unable to handle the additional expenses a divorce might bring. Below, find a few tips that might help you keep your financial picture a bit rosier. Read on to find out more.

Understand marital assets

This means everything you own, from bank accounts to real estate to collectibles. Anything bought or acquired after the date of the marriage is probably a marital asset and may be shared between the parties. How the assets are shared depends on your state of residency. Some spouses make the mistake of disregarding investments and business assets that appear to belong to their spouse, so try to not leave money on the table when you are in your golden years – your quality of life is too important.

Think you don't need spousal support (alimony)? Think again

In many cases, you are entitled to spousal support if you have fewer financial resources than your spouse. You can only be awarded this form of support if you ask for it, so don't disregard it.

Don't allow debts to bring you down

Marital debt is a bit like marital assets in that only debts acquired after marriage count. In some states, debts are split 50/50, but it's divided equitably in most states. Add up all the debts each of you has, and let your lawyer lead the way on what you'll be left paying after the divorce.

Social Security help

You may be entitled to one-half of your spouse's Social Security payment each month if it amounts to more than your own allotment. Contact the Social Security Administration (SSA) to find out more.

Life is different for senior citizens, and their divorce issues are too. Speak to a divorce attorney about your financial needs and get your assets protected.