When older couples in California decide to split up, the divorce can carry some major financial consequences. While child custody and support are generally not issues for seniors, property division can become more complex. Many couples over 50 have accumulated decades of marital property together and often have large retirement funds that will need to be divided as part of the divorce.

Across the country, divorce is on the rise among older Americans. Even though the divorce rate has dropped overall and among young people, it has doubled over the past 20 years for people over age 50. These “gray divorces” require more complicated calculations in order to ensure that investment and retirement funds are properly divided.

Gray divorce can be particularly complicated for wealthy, high-earning couples. In many cases, both partners have multiple retirement funds and other investment accounts. These funds are a vital part of enjoy life into old age. Other types of investments like annuities can be even more difficult to handle in a divorce and might require exchanging other assets. In addition, even wealthy couples may need to adjust their lifestyles after a high-asset divorce as it costs more to maintain two households than one.

A senior who is considering divorce may be concerned about how the end of their marriage will affect their financial future. A family law attorney can work with a divorcing spouse to advocate for his or her rights and protect key assets. In addition, legal counsel could seek to achieve a fair outcome of the property division process.