Widows, divorcees face financial wake-up call when spouses are gone
July 21, 2017
“Widows and divorced women need to plan for retirement differently. That’s the advice from financial planners and studies by Allianz, Lincoln Financial Group, and the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College.
Women pay a higher economic price for divorce, separation, and widowhood compared with men. Older wives are doubly disadvantaged relative to their husbands because, among other factors, they’re less likely to recoup their losses from divorce by remarrying, according to a 2016 Center for Retirement Research study. Furthermore, men typically make more money than women, are more likely to have access to pensions, and are more likely to achieve financial security and live above the poverty line in later life compared with women, regardless of marital status.
About 65 percent of women save less than they need to, compared with 55 percent of men, according to the 2017 Lincoln Financial retirement survey, based on a national sampling of 2,509 full-time workers ages 21 to 70 who have been contributing to their current employers’ defined-contribution retirement plans for at least one year.
So what’s an aging American woman to do? First, seek out help, starting with a financial adviser, particularly one who is a fiduciary — the term means the adviser puts clients’ interests first, ahead of the paycheck.”