It is really interesting to note the considerable increase in men and women over the age of 60 who are now making the decision to divorce. Certainly, we at Hedges have a real variation in terms of the ages of our clients and the option of divorce proceedings is by no means limited to the younger generation.
What needs to be borne in mind is that different considerations may need to be taken into account when determining what an appropriate settlement would be for people nearing or past retirement age. Housing needs will inevitably be at the forefront and often rehousing into two separate households where one or both parties are retired may be extremely difficult without a mortgage capacity or the prospect of additional future income.
The appropriateness of achieving equity release via a lifetime mortgage may well be something to consider, dependent upon all of the factors of each specific case.
In circumstances where the divorce rate in the over 60's is continuing to rise, options such as this will become all the more relevant when considering how a reasonable settlement can be achieved.
In 2013, almost 10,000 men over the age of 60 got divorced (9,865) in England and Wales, a rise of 54% since the turn of the century, with the number of women aged 60+ getting divorced up 72% to 6,215. In financial terms it can depend on what you have to divide. There could be issues with pensions, future care and having enough to live on without having to go back to work. Some, especially women, who have little savings or pension of their own may have feared having to stay in a failing marriage out of fear of being left with little to live on, which is where solutions such as equity release can come into the equation.