This month, Al and Tipper Gore shocked the country by announcing their plans to divorce – just months from their 40th wedding anniversary. While some see the couple’s plans to divorce as sad or odd, the truth is that so-called silver divorces are not a rare occurrence in the baby boom generation – and that silver divorces don’t necessarily come after bad marriages.

Marriage experts from around the country agree – those married in the late 60s and early 70s have the highest divorce rates of any other age group, before or after, and for good reason. Baby boomers saw war, women in the workplace, the civil rights movement, and a sea-saw economy – and many were married very early on in life. What followed was somewhat predictable: many of these marriages couldn’t withstand changes in the household or changes in the world around them. Even 40 years later, baby boomers are still posting higher rates of divorce that their parents or their children.

Silver divorce may also simply be a sign of people who grow apart or change. With both women and men living longer with advances in medicine, couples who marry in their 20s are looking at 60 or even 70 years spent with their partners. Some may have different life plans after their children are grown or after their retirement. Others could simply grow apart or want something new out of life.

Some aspects of silver divorce are more difficult than those of divorce after only a few years. Older couples who decide to divorce often have a greater number of assets, joint retirement accounts, or multiple properties. Older couple are also more likely to have issues with splitting assets that have been shared over many years. If you are going through a silver divorce in Washington State and need to speak to a lawyer, contact Molly Kenny today to set up a meeting.

Molly B. Kenny
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Divorce and Child Custody Attorney Serving Bellevue and Seattle Washington