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Financial results of divorce often hit women hard

41441501_S.jpgMany factors influence the financial outcomes for Missouri women after a divorce. Societal factors like pay gaps between men and women and traditional gender roles contribute to lower incomes for divorced women. Taking too long to create a post-divorce budget also diminishes the financial futures of some women.

A divorce often results in a drop in income. The Bureau of Labor Statistics calculated that earnings for married women exceed earnings for other women by roughly 20 percent. Divorce erases this advantage. According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office, household incomes for women drop 41 percent after a divorce. Lower wages for women exacerbate the loss of marriage income. For every $1.00 earned by men, women in comparable positions earn $0.82. Lower earnings also translate into lower Social Security benefits.

Traditional gender roles that persist within some marriages add to the financial troubles many women experience after they divorce. When women emerge from marriages in which their husbands handled all of the finances, they lack financial knowledge. Years might pass before they get a handle on their budgets and set financial goals.

Any person regardless of gender could benefit from legal advice about how a divorce could influence their income and long-term financial stability. An attorney who has experience with these types of family law matters could provide information about how state law determines child support, spousal support and property division. When making decisions about a divorce settlement, a person could gain insights about potential tax obligations resulting from the receipt of different types of assets.

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