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There was a time when people would not even think of getting a divorce after many years of marriage, even if they were unhappy. Historically, the majority of people simply did not see the point of getting divorced after a long marriage and were content enough to just wait it out. That is no longer the case today. Now, people are more willing to get divorced if they are unhappy, no matter how long they have been married. When they do, there are certain things to take into consideration that may not necessarily be a factor in a divorce after a shorter marriage.
In some divorce cases, judges will award maintenance, also known as alimony. Maintenance is more likely to be awarded after a lengthy marriage, particularly if one spouse remained at home for a long time to care for children. When this is the case, the spouse that remained at home is likely to be in a worse financial position, and may not have the skills necessary to return to the workforce right away. In these instances, a judge will most likely award that spouse maintenance, at least for a period of time.
In addition to one spouse being more susceptible to financial hardship after a divorce, there are other challenging financial aspects associated with divorce after a lengthy marriage. Property division issues are complicated in any divorce, but this is especially true when the marriage was a long one. A couple that has been married for a long time may have their finances spread around in retirement plans, stock options, Social Security benefits, joint bank accounts, and more. All of these assets must be divided, and that can be difficult.
When a couple has been married for a long time, their identities are often intertwined together. They may enjoy the same activities, have the same friends, and be accustomed to doing everything together. After divorce, both spouses often feel as though they have lost their identities, and may have to create new ones. They may lose friends that were mutual friends of the couple, and they may have to find who they are without a spouse to rely on.
There is no such thing as an easy divorce. Although all divorces are difficult, those that happen after a long marriage are especially devastating. Both spouses have likely envisioned growing old together and felt fairly secure in their marriage after so many years. Due to these factors, getting divorced after a long marriage is often even more difficult than divorces that occur after spouses are married for a short period of time.
All divorces present their own challenges, but there are some issues that are more likely to be present in a divorce that comes after a long marriage. At the Law Office of Martoccio & Martoccio, our skilled Hinsdale family lawyers can help with any divorce, and we want to help you with yours. Call us today at 630-920-8855 to schedule a free initial consultation to learn more about how we can help you.
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