The later-life divorce rate has more than doubled between 1990 and 2014 – 25% percent of all Americans who got divorced were in their 50s or older in 2014, as compared to 8% in 1990. Later-life divorce rates are now outpacing younger groups', whose rates have plateaued or even fallen – and with this trend comes a concurrent rise in financially-unstable older adults.
Older couples who were saving for retirement together may find that they are no longer able to retire once they split, whether they are struggling financially without a partner or supporting a dependent ex-spouse via alimony payments. About 62 percent of divorcing couples among those 50 or older fight about retirement savings in the process of reaching a settlement, according to a recent survey of members of the Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. Eighty-three percent fight over alimony, and 60 percent spar about business interests, the survey found.