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Divorce could cause financial stress for any age group, but it’s particularly challenging for those in their 40s and 50s. Older couples in California tend to have more assets to divide and more to lose if they decide to end their marriages. There are a few things a spouse who is unhappy in their marriage should consider before contacting an attorney.

It’s important for spouses to take stock of their personal finances, especially for those who weren’t active in financial matters during the marriage. Fortunately, there are financial professionals who may help a spouse understand their investment accounts and determine how much a family business is worth. Having this information could help an older person determine whether they’ll have enough money to live on their own as well as retire when they’re ready.

Many people in this age group have a significant amount of equity in their homes. Each spouse will have to decide whether they want to continue living in the home or sell it. There are benefits and drawbacks to each option. The person who lives in the house may get fewer liquid assets in the divorce settlement. Although they’ll have the home, they might have to cover the costs of maintenance on their own. If there’s a mortgage on the property, the spouse that keeps the house might have to qualify to refinance in their own name. Child and spousal support payments could give their income the boost it needs to make keeping the house possible.

Divorce attorneys may be able to provide clients with the guidance they need to make decisions that will affect their future. Getting divorced involves dividing marital assets and debts. With the help of an experienced attorney, an unhappy spouse may be able to get out of the marriage with a settlement that helps them reach their goals.