More and more adults who are over the age of 50 are deciding that it is time to call it quits on their marriages. But while ending an unhappy relationship can be incredibly rewarding, there are also certain financial pitfalls for which people should watch out. This is especially true for men and women in Minnesota who are going through gray divorce and retirement at the same time.

Finances are one of the biggest contributing factors to so-called gray divorce. Even in marriages that have lasted for decades, it is possible for two people to hold very different opinions regarding financial goals and money management. So why do these couples split after spending 20, 30 or even 40 years together? There are several reasons.

People are living longer

Baby Boomers have fairly significant life expectancies. While this is certainly something positive, like many other people, you might be worried about possibly outliving your assets. Stress over that possibility amplifies if you are married to a spouse who continually spends irresponsibly.

It is not just money that people are worried about when getting older, either. Since you potentially still have several decades of life left to enjoy, you might be hesitant to spend those years with someone who does not make you happy. Divorce can be the best solution for someone in this situation.

Understand your finances

Even when filing for divorce is the right move, it is important to be aware of how it will affect your finances. For example, you will probably have to divide at least a portion of your retirement savings with your ex. That split will not necessarily be 50/50, and instead it will reflect what is most fair.

Retirement savings are not the only thing you need to worry about. If you are thinking about keeping the marital home, you must consider whether you can afford to do so as a single-person household. After all, owning a home is about more than just the mortgage. You also need to know how much your property taxes are, insurance costs and predicted maintenance costs.

Alimony may play a role

It is possible for the court to order you or your ex to pay alimony, also referred to as spousal support. However, the duration of that support order could be much longer than you expect. It is not uncommon for alimony orders for long-term marriages to last the rest of a person’s life.

No one wants to enter retirement without a stable financial foundation. Unfortunately, a gray divorce can compromise that stability. There is simply too much on the line to take a backseat during your divorce, so you need to take a proactive approach. You should be sure to seek out the guidance of an experienced attorney who can ensure the protection of your rights and well-being.