Spouses over age 50 who are considering divorce should understand that separation could impact their ability to retire. However, there are steps that a North Carolina resident can take to minimize the potential damage. The first step is to obtain financial paperwork such as copies of tax returns and bank statements. These documents will help to determine who is liable for a debt or who is entitled to an asset.

Someone who is ending their marriage is also encouraged to do a credit check on themselves and their spouse. This may uncover hidden debts or assets that a spouse may have.

While an individual may want to talk with an attorney about an upcoming divorce, it could be just as important to speak with a financial adviser. This professional can work with a divorcing spouse to help create an investment plan that takes into account their risk tolerance and investment timeline. Taking this step can be ideal for those who want to downsize or reduce exposure to risky investments but couldn’t while married. After a divorce, it is important to maximize retirement contributions to create a secure financial future. If a couple had a pension plan, its proceeds may be split in a divorce.

There could be many factors that determine the outcome of a divorce case. For example, former romantic partners who don’t get along anymore may take months or years to formally dissolve their marriage. The earning potential of an individual could also play a role in how a divorce settlement is structured. If a couple had children, it may be necessary to create a parenting plan and determine who gets primary custody.