What is Gray Divorce?

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What is gray divorce Minnesota

This week on the podcast, Linda Lingo, a financial coach, and CPA, talks with us about Gray Divorce. Gray divorce is a term that refers to the divorce of older couples who are 50 years or older (trustandwill.com). We are seeing an increase in Minnesota divorces, specifically with people over 65, so I wanted to talk with Linda about why this may be and what things people need to be aware of when going through a gray divorce. 

1 in 10 divorces are coming from the age group of 65+

Linda believes the reason for this is twofold. First, people find that once they become empty-nesters, there isn’t much holding them together anymore. They may have different interests and goals they want to pursue for the remainder of their lives. Secondly, getting a divorce is much more socially acceptable than in past generations. Since this is becoming so common, what do people need to keep in mind when going through a grey divorce?

  1. Know the stipulations and rules around retirement, 401k accounts, and pensions. This is a great area to hire a professional, as there are specific rules for managing these accounts.
  2. While dividing assets, remember that the division of retirement/401k is pre-taxed dollars vs. other assets that might be taxed. All assets are not equal in value.  
  3. Suppose you are getting spousal support or alimony. In that case, it is wise to have the person paying the support take out a termed life insurance policy and put the receiver as the beneficiary. This ensures that the person receiving the support will get it even if something happens to the payee. 


It is common for women to want to keep the family home as they go through a divorce. However, there can be consequences to this. Before agreeing to buy your ex-spouse out of the house, consider the new mortgage you’ll take on. The family home often has far more room than necessary for a single person, so consider if you truly need to keep the memories and incur the costs or if it is safe to let it go. 


I highly encourage those of you who may be going through a gray divorce to go back and listen to this week’s podcasts because there are some wonderful nuggets Linda provided us with. She also has a free resource, Your Gray Divorce, 6 Critical Financial Steps to Go from Surviving Your Divorce to Thriving in Your New Life, available on her website. If you are looking for a MN divorce mediator to help support you and navigate through divorce, please contact me at www.lesakoski.com

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