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For divorcing Baby Boomers, alimony often chief concern

As Baby Boomers age, matrimonial experts are reporting an increase in "gray divorce," a phenomenon in which older couples end their marital unions. Divorces involving individuals over the age of 50 have their own unique dynamics compared to divorcing that involve younger couples. One major difference is the focus in the divorce case.

By the time couples are in their 50s, the kids are often grown and have left home, meaning child custody and child support have become moot points. However, parties in their 50s have also often become better off financially, often with one or both partners having advanced into senior positions in their career. This tends to make financial matters relating to income even more important in gray divorces.

The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers is a nationwide group composed of attorneys who handle divorces and other family law matters. In a recent survey of its members, 38 percent reported that alimony was the most common issue divorcing couples over the age of 50 fought over, making alimony the top item of contention for couples in this age group. Coming in at second place with the vote of 20 percent of AAML lawyers as the top contested issue in gray divorces was business interests, while retirement accounts garnered the third position with 14 percent of the vote.

Divorce at any age can be a complicated undertaking. But, if you have a keen grasp of your own needs and an attorney who understands your priorities, you will have an easier time getting what you want.

Source:, Divorce Increasing Among Baby Boomers, American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, June 11, 2013

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