Even if you planned for your divorce and estimated the potential impact, it's likely that your finances will be affected more than you imagined. Financial life post-divorce is about more than separating your finances from your former spouse- it's a good opportunity to reflect about where you are in life and to gain control of your financial situation, especially with regard to retirement.
There's a reason that divorce and retirement plans are linked: a study from Bowling Green State University pointed out that “gray divorce”, or divorce for those nearing retirement, is increasing. Getting back on track quickly for individuals approaching retirement is important, and it can be challenging if you relied on your partner for financial management and advice. Don't waste time dwelling on the past- instead use this as an opportunity to check in on your financial goals and retirement plans while adjusting to your new life.
Start out by taking an inventory of all “forgotten” financial links between you and your former partner. While marital property was likely sorted out during the divorce, don't forget about any plans where you were covered as a couple, like life insurance or long-term care. Update that information accordingly after meeting with a financial professional.
Retirement planning is something you should check in on often, but this is a good opportunity to think about where you're headed and where you'd like to be. Your plans for retirement may have shifted dramatically after your divorce was finalized, so start considering whether what you have put aside is going to work for your new plans. Redefine what you want, and adjust short-term goals and spending to be in line with those new plans. For some individuals, they may have not even considered what they would like to do with retirement on their own, so use this reflection time to narrow down some possible plans. If you're considering divorce and would like to talk through the options with a qualified Illinois divorce attorney, reach out today.