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Some age groups more likely to be divorced

Texas couples may be more likely to be divorced in their 50s than at any other age based on a survey of data showing that 42 percent of 59-year-olds are separated, divorced or on a second, third or later marriage. However, in comparison, 43 percent of people in that age group were still on their first marriages. After the age of 59, the divorce rate slows again.

The survey examined census data from 1960 and 1980 along with information from the Minnesota Population Center's Integrated Public Microdata Sample Project to compare the ages at which people were divorced, separated and remarried. It found that divorce was more common among people in theirs 20s in both 1960 and 1980 than for couples in 2013.

On the other hand, people older than 40 were more likely to divorce than couples in earlier decades. In 1960, fewer than 20 percent of 59-year-olds were divorced, separated or in later marriages, and the same was true in 1980 for fewer than 25 percent of respondents.

Older adults who divorce may have fewer child custody and child support issues to discuss because their children may no longer be minors, but they may have accumulated far more assets over the years. This might lead to a complex divorce that involves dividing real estate, investments and even businesses. If the couple has a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, one may try to challenge the agreement in court. Another possibility is that one party might try to hide assets. Even if both people are cooperative and forthcoming about their finances, property division may be complicated. The two might agree on exchanging some items rather than splitting all shared marital property. A family law attorney can often offer other alternatives to a client who is going through the process.

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Bruce Turner

In addition to his law degree, Bruce Turner has a master's degree in tax law and is Board Certified in Commercial Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

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