The annual UK divorce and pensions report has been revealed - with some shocking results.
According to the report, divorced women are retiring on pensions a third of the size of men’s.
The findings show that, on average, divorced men in their 60s have a personal pension pot worth more than £103,000, while women in the same situation have just £26,000.
By the time women come to retirement, they have a third of what men have saved throughout their career. This can be due to a number of factors, such as the gender pay gap, part-time work or taking leave to look after children.
This inequality means that women are often left at a huge disadvantage when it comes to their long-term financial security.
The phenomenon is sometimes referred to as the “pension gap”.
During a divorce, how much an individual has in their pension is often overlooked – instead, divorce settlements tend to focus on physical assets. This means female divorcees can often be left short of money when it comes to retirement.
Research by national law firm Shoosmiths found that 33% of Brits did not know that married couples are entitled to a proportion of their spouse’s pension – despite it often being the second most valuable asset.
It’s also worth noting that, according to Office of National Statistics (ONS), couples who cohabit are not entitled to each other’s pensions if they split up. Due to their lack of legal status, cohabiters do not benefit from the same financial rights as married couples.
Experts also found that divorce rates peak in September and January – post-summer holidays and after the festive season – and currently 42% of marriages in England and Wales end in divorce.
Results showed the rate of divorce in older couples is also on the rise.
These couples, who decide to part ways in later life, are sometimes referred to as “Silver Splicers” or “Silver Separators.”