What if you find love later in life,
possibly after surviving the death of a marriage
or other tough curves that life throws you?
Once you find your love match, you may want to
enter a committed relationship and blend families
and friends. What about blending marriage and
money later in life?
Does it make financial sense for couples to marry
or co-habitate after age 50?
Before you say, “I do,” later in life, it’s important
to weigh some costs of getting married
versus living together. We’re not factoring in
religious or social reasons for getting married;
we’re only exploring financial costs to consider
before you walk down the aisle.
Benefits of marriage for older couples:
* Marriage provides federal and state spousal and
* Marriage gives spouses a right to inherit if
their spouse dies without a will;
* Marriage permits spouses to make medical
decisions for each other, if you neglected to
create a living will;
* Marriage might lower your tax bill if you file
joint income tax returns;
* Marriage at age 62 or older may qualify you to
keep your late spouse’s social security benefits
or to receive better benefits on your new
Benefits of cohabitation for older couples:
* Widows or widowers won’t lose the pension,
social security or some veteran benefits from
their deceased mate, if they co-habitate instead
of remarry before reaching age 60 (age 50 if
* Co-habitating couples may get some protection
of marriage with proper planning, like a
“Co-habitation Agreement” and a will, legally
drafted, signed and notarized, which outline the
division of property and financial support if the
relationship ends in a breakup or death of one
* Co-habitating couples are not responsible for
each others medical bills, including long term
care costs, which aren’t covered by medicare.
What are financial risks in late-life marriage?
Widows and widowers who remarry may lose
pension, health care, social security, retirement
plan or veteran benefits from their deceased
In many states, spouses are responsible for each
others’ medical bills, including bills for long-term
So how is your beloved’s health? Does he or she
have long term care insurance? Smart couples
won’t walk down the aisle or live together without it.
What’s a financial downside of co-habitation?
A live-in partner who’s healthy and living in the
home of their ill partner may lose the use of
their partner’s income, assets and possibly their
home, if it is sold by the state to cover the
long term care bills of the ill partner.
What’s a financial antidote to that scenario?
Co-habitating or married couples with income
over $20,000 and assets over $50,000 may consider
buying long term care insurance that protects
hard-earned assets against the high cost of
long term care bills for one or both partners.
If a new couple’s income and assets are less than
listed above, it’s smart to check their state’s rules
on qualifying for Medicaid, the government program
that pays long-term care bills for people who can’t
What are the chances you may need long term care?
Statistics show that 70% of people will need
long term care at some point. Again, it’s not
covered under medicare.
Medical and health care bills that Americans
can’t afford to pay is the top cause of bankruptcy
Long Term Care insurance is designed to protect
the assets you’ve worked hard to accumulate
by transferring the risks to a top rated insurance
company. This helps insure that each partner
may live with dignity and leave their financial legacy
for children or charitable causes instead of spending
it on health care bills.
What happens to the inheritance when new couples
have children from previous marriages?
Wealthy couples can keep their assets separate
and leave them to their respective heirs.
What if one spouse or domestic partner needs
A savvy solution is for the wealthy partner
to leave their money to their kids in trust,
and reserve income for their new partner for life
to cover medical, health care, living expenses.
Part of the wealthy partner’s estate may be left
to the new partner. Terms should be discussed
and agreed upon with a prenup agreement before
marrying later in life, or before creating a
co-habitation agreement if you forego marriage.
Should grown children be informed about their
parents’ prenup or co-habitation agreements?
It is smart to disclose terms of these agreements
to grown children, who may have started to see
their parents’ money as their money.
Should late-life couples live together? Or is
marriage more aligned with their core values,
despite the cost?
Each late-life couple should discuss these
issues and weigh possible solutions, ideally with
their wealth protection advisor. Find out if they
each qualify to buy long-term care insurance.
This isn’t a romantic discussion; it faces a reality
of late-life love. It’s more like a having a business
discussion before taking a step toward marriage
or cohabitation. Bring proof of your income, assets,
credit history, debts and other financial obligations.
Each partner needs to disclose this info and provide
legal proof when your lawyer writes a prenup or
How do old debts impact a new relationship?
New partners aren’t legally responsible for
previously incurred debts that their partner brings
to a new marriage or relationship. Yet these debts
can burden a new partnership and be a big red flag
about careless spending which can sink a relationship.
Later-life couples need to have these courageous
conversations and come to terms with all of these
concerns before making the legal commitment,
“For richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health.”
Create happy, sexy love, health and wealth that lasts,
P.S. This is not intended to be tax advice,
legal advice, nor financial planning advice. It
is intended to give you financial issues to
explore and resolve before entering a serious
relationship after age 40.
P.P.S. Want help in solving these top concerns
of late-life couples before you decide to marry
You may schedule a no-obligation phone consult
with our licensed, certified wealth protection advisor
when you send an email to:
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Wealth protection consult for new couples.