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The Rising Rate of Gray Divorces After Age 50 Are Complicating Estate Planning Issues


We’ve discussed how to use assets such as life insurance to strategically plan your estate after your divorce, however rising divorce rates amongst Americans after the age of 50 (known as a “gray divorce”) can cause a number of conflicts when it comes to estate planning, especially when it comes to family strife and discord amongst beneficiaries, which is a major reason why clients get involved in estate planning in the first place. According to the latest surveys, changes in tax law and increase healthcare costs are also creating major challenges for estate planning.

As a result, it is more important than ever to proactively review and discuss estate plans with your attorney and family on an ongoing basis in order to reduce family conflict during the divorce process. This is because divorce later in life can significantly impact retirement funding and planning, as well as other important issues, such as power of attorney and Social Security benefits.

Everything In The Estate Plan Must Be Changed For A Divorce Later In Life

The goal of any estate planning attorney should be to help you build a stable plan for you and your loved ones. This can be challenging for a couple divorcing later in life because spouses are often listed as the beneficiary for everything for the other spouse, and this will need to be changed. This not only includes changing beneficiary forms, but also listed assets, policies, retirement accounts, trusts, and more. Companies and institutions with any policies and accounts also need to be contacted so that everything associated with these accounts can be updated. In addition, given the changes that the SECURE Act has made to estate planning for non-spouse beneficiaries, additional planning will need to take place when it comes to stretch IRAs that are a part of any estate planning post-divorce, as a number of individuals may change their beneficiaries to someone other than their spouses.

Trusts Should Play A Major Part in Any Plan

Regardless of whether a couple expects to divorce or not, relying on trusts to protect assets from future claims and to leave property to heirs in order to minimize costs and delays make it easier to pass on assets, even if family conflict might be expected. These controversies could also be on the rise over the next decade given the current housing shortage. There’s no question that setting up trusts helps with smooth transitions without the high cost of probate and family fights.

Contact Florida Estate Planning Attorneys That Care

Gierach and Gierach, P.A. has provided the very best in estate planning legal services to its clients here in Florida for years, including effective representation and counseling. We pride ourselves on our one-on-one approach in assisting clients and in helping them plan for the future, as well as minimizing any stress or conflict they might be concerned about. Contact our Orlando estate planning attorneys today to find out more about our legal services.





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