The majority of married women in Kentucky and across the U.S. still leave major money decisions to their husbands, according to a report. Unfortunately, this can leave them financially vulnerable if they divorce.
For the report, UBS Global Wealth Management surveyed 600 women who had been divorced or widowed in the last five years and an additional 1,500 couples. To participate, those surveyed needed to have at least $250,000 in liquid assets. The report found that 56 percent of women depend on their husbands to make financial planning decisions and investments. Surprisingly, millennial women were more likely to fall into this trap than women from older generations, with 61 percent saying they let their husbands do the financial planning. In comparison, only 54 percent of baby boomer women turned over major money decisions to their husbands.
The report also found that 59 percent of the women who were divorced or widowed regretted not taking part in financial planning when they were married. The reasons for their regrets included finding hidden spending, hidden accounts and hidden debt and not understanding the state of their finances once they were on their own. Of the women that remarried, 80 percent now participate in major money decisions with their spouses. Overall, 94 percent of women who were divorced or widowed said they would insist on being in the financial loop if they had to do it all again.
A divorce can be financially challenging for both women and men. Individuals facing the end of their marriage may benefit from retaining a family law attorney to advocate for their rights during court proceedings or in settlement negotiations.
Source: Bloomberg, “Rise of ‘Gray’ Divorce Forces Financial Reckoning After 50“, Suzanne Wooley, April 13, 2018