The older you are when you navigate your Michigan divorce, the less likely you are to be able to bring in an income in the aftermath. For this reason, protecting your financial interests is particularly important when you divorce later in life.
According to AARP, the divorce rate among individuals 50 and older has doubled in recent decades. Now, one out of every four splits now involves those within this age group. The financial stakes are high when you split from your spouse at this stage of life, but you may be able to position yourself well for financial stability by taking the following steps.
Know what you have for retirement
If your spouse was the main breadwinner during your marriage, you may not have the full picture when it comes to your retirement accounts. Knowing how much you have coming your way should give you a better sense of whether you might need to build your retirement fund. On the flip side, if you have money in an IRA or 401(k), you should plan on it undergoing fair and equitable distribution between you and your former partner.
Familiarize yourself with all assets and debts
The more you understand about your individual and combined assets and debts, the better your chances of receiving your fair share. Secure a complete disclosure that details all such assets and maintain copies for reference. Be sure to consider home equity lines as well as any business debts you may have.
Update financial accounts
Now is also a good time to stop sharing bank accounts or credit cards and get them in your name only. If you stopped working during your marriage while your spouse continued to do so, it is important that you begin to establish your own credit history when you split.