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Posted on: 29 July 2022 by Goodwins Family Law Solicitors
The divorce of Bill and Melinda Gates was the latest in a string of high-profile divorces involving spouses over the age of 50. The news took much of the world by surprise, but research from Bowling Green State University suggests that divorce in one’s later years, or ‘grey divorce’ as it has been coined, is more common now than ever. Since 1990, the divorce rate of people over the age of 50 has doubled, with researchers expecting the figure to triple by 2030.
The grey divorce revolution is booming, but what has caused this sudden shift in attitude? In this article, we explain the reasons why so many couples are choosing to spend their golden years apart.
The term ‘grey divorce’ was coined in 2004 by the American Association of Retired Persons. It has been used countless times in research studying divorce in people over the age of 50.
Research published in the Journal of Gerontology found that over 25% of people getting divorced in the United States are above the age of 50, with over half of those divorces occurring after 20 years of marriage.
And the phenomenon isn’t restricted to the United States, either. The same trends are happening in Canada, Japan, Australia, India and even the United Kingdom. Figures from the UK’s Office for National Statistics show that the divorce rate among those 65 or older has gone up 46% in a decade (2004-2014).
While rates in divorce of older couples may be on the rise, it shouldn’t be unusual to see spouses going their separate ways as they approach the retirement phase of their lives.
With their children grown up, independent and out of the house, couples tend to re-evaluate their goals for the remaining portion of their lives. Many spouses find that their values and ambitions have changed over the years and opt for divorce in pursuit of personal happiness.
The past two decades have seen a dramatic shift in attitudes towards marriage, sex and equality. As society becomes less religious and more liberal, attitudes towards divorce have tempered.
No matter whether you’re 65 or 25, live in the UK or abroad, have a high net worth or low income, Goodwins Family Law Solicitors is here to help you through your divorce. We have a team of lawyers that specialise in various areas of divorce and family law. Working with diligence, professionalism and care, our lawyers will steer you towards a favourable outcome and help you transition into the next chapter of your life.
If you are considering a divorce, contact our team for a consultation.
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