Tips featured in the segment:
From Janice Green
- Consult with an attorney sooner rather than later: To do so does not mean you will hire this person or proceed with a divorce. It is an information-gathering mission. Divorce After 50 gives specific guidance on what information to gather. Don't assume a divorce lawyer knows about health care options to bridge the gap to Medicare, the impact of estate planning before and after divorce, and financial planning.
- Think twice before involving adult children: They can play significant roles in parental divorce - some helpful, some counter-productive. A section of Divorce After 50 is devoted to this topic.
- Don't be bullied into negotiating before you are fully informed: Even though you agree to something and know you can change your mind, don't set up that expectation. Negotiating too early may create barriers that hinder later negotiations when you know more. Level the playing field with information first. That will save money and heartache on down the road.
- Examine the age-related aspects of assets and their value to you: Just a few examples are age-triggered exemptions from real estate property taxes, eligibility (age and length of marriage) for Social Security and military retirement and survivor benefits, and age requirements for timing withdrawals from retirement plans.
- Consider negotiating for a mixed portfolio: Don't put all your eggs in one asset basket, if at all possible. Now is not the time to blindly risk your financial future, especially in this economy and at this age. Generating and timing post-divorce income is a primary goal.
- Don't let anxiety paralyze you: Read the last chapter of Divorce After 50. It is a collection of "survivor stories," written by those who discovered their own wisdom, strengths, and creativity during and after a divorce later in life.
Janice Green has practiced law for more than 30 years and is a partner in Farris & Green, a top-rated law boutique firm in Austin, Texas.
She is a Fellow in the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and is named to Best Lawyers in America.
She is a frequent and popular family law lecturer and has published numerous articles for family law attorneys.