Washington divorces are complicated enough, but couples going through them should take note of the fact that there may be issues beyond property division, custody and child support. People must be aware of the fact that life insurance in a divorce can be an issue, especially when there are situations where one spouse is responsible for providing certain things for the children or even paying alimony.
By the time that some Washington couples decide to divorce, they may have a very contentious relationship. It might seem that they cannot speak to each other without arguing and it might seem that the only path to divorce is through a lengthy and contested trial. Couples divorcing more amicably often find it easier to reach a settlement between themselves, but even spouses in a higher-conflict relationship might find advantages to negotiating an agreement before going to trial. There are various concerns that people may keep in mind when determining their strategy to move forward with a divorce.
Washington residents may be surprised to learn that the rate of divorce among couples over 50 has increased significantly, even though the overall divorce rate has dropped. In fact, one study indicates that the 'gray divorce" rate doubled between 1990 and 2010.
Washington husbands might be less likely to file for divorce than their wives. The American Sociological Association reported in a 2015 study that women initiated divorce nearly 70% of the time. The reasons for this may include a lack of emotional and career support and too little help with child care and housework.
About one in five retired couples in Washington and around the country rely on their Social Security checks to provide virtually all of their income, and older spouses sometimes remain in unhappy marriages because they fear losing these benefits will leave them unable to make ends meet. However, the Social Security Administration has options in place for people that could allow them to live comfortably in retirement even if they choose to divorce.
Divorce can be costly, and some people in Washington may be tempted to turn to their 401(k)s or IRAs to help pay for expenses. However, people often do this without understanding the financial implications.
When Washington couples decide to divorce, the financial effects can linger on long after the emotional problems have been sorted out. People need to adjust to handling their budgets on their own, which can be a more challenging task if they always left the finances to the other spouse. Not only may people's standard of living change after divorce, but they may also face difficulties adjusting to the cost of a single life. However, five years after the divorce is finalized, most people feel as if they are back on their financial feet and moving forward once again.
When more people in Washington got married just after high school or university, prenuptial agreements may have seemed unnecessary to many. Prenups were often considered rare, a sign of a potential mismatch or upcoming divorce, or an indication that an ultra-wealthy person or a celebrity was involved. However, as the average age of marriage has increased, more people are opting for prenups. They want to decide for themselves how their homes and businesses will be handled in case of divorce, and they may be coming to the relationship with an established financial plan reflected in the agreement.
Some people in Washington may be prompted to file for divorce along with the turn of the year. There are a number of reasons why an increasing number of divorces are initiated at the beginning of a new year. In the first place, parents may be concerned about the effects on their children. For many families, the winter holidays are an important time. Parents are often very concerned about how the divorce will affect their children, even when both spouses are well aware that their marriage has come to an end. As a result, they may want to protect their children's holiday experience by forestalling the divorce.
When a couple in Washington decides to get married, they may want a prenuptial agreement. Even if a couple is simply planning on living together, a cohabitation agreement can help facilitate conversation and set expectations. It is important that both individuals have input into the agreement and are happy with it.