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Many people delay divorce due to cost of independent living

The demographic group referred to as millennials are statistically less likely to choose an early marriage, preferring to wait until later in life than the previous generation did. Despite that, divorce or separation still happens to many couples. What many younger people have discovered, though, is that they may not be able to afford a life in Alberta without a partner.

Statistics Canada reports that the average age of marriage for millennial men is 31 and 28 for women. Many choose to live as common-law couples instead. Separations can occur, however, no matter the legal status of the couple. Unfortunately, the lower wages and high costs of living associated with Canada's major cities make splitting up financially difficult for many who want to go their separate ways. 

A study published by TD Canada revealed that around half of all divorced or separated members of Generation X and millennials said they were not prepared financially to live on their own. An additional 23 percent said they delayed a separation because they couldn't afford to be single. Financial planners agree it is important for couples to establish a degree of financial autonomy in case of separation or even the death of the other party. 

One expert believes that money should not stand in the way if a divorce or separation seems necessary. Though it may not seem possible, there may be ways to achieve both personal and financial independence. A family law attorney can help a couple or an individual discuss their options for a new beginning, including division of assets and spousal support.

Source: The Spec, "Can't afford to live without you: Rent a crucial factor in many relationships", Dec. 5, 2016

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