When most people think of divorcing couples, they aren’t likely to think of grandparents, but studies show that divorce among people over 50 is on the rise. Older couples in Minnesota who are divorcing may have different needs and issues than their younger counterparts.

Often, people over 50 have finished raising children, so the day-to-day labor of child rearing is no longer a concern. Child support, custody and visitation may not need to be addressed, but with parents having children at later ages, it may still be an issue for some. The division of assets may be more of a concern for aging couples. With robust retirement accounts, investments and joint property to divide, mature couples may have complicated estates to sort through. As couples near retirement age, ensuring that there is enough money to live on, as well as deal with any health issues that arise, is of paramount concern.

Even if their children are grown, older couples still have to consider how and when to tell the kids. Parents may be shocked by the strong reactions their adult children have to their divorce. By waiting until the children have left the home, older parents may feel they have done their duty and be anxious to pursue a more personally fulfilling life after devoting many years to their children. Their grown children, however, may feel as if their foundation has cracked and need much of the same reassurance and consideration that would be given to younger children.

Navigating the tricky waters of “gray divorce,” a term applied to couples facing divorce over 50, can be complicated and confusing. An attorney who has experience in family law may be able to provide the guidance needed to ensure the best outcome possible, regardless of the complexity of the issues involved.