In Texas and throughout the country, many married couples are ending their relationships after 30 years or more. In fact, the rate of divorce among people ages 50 and above has more than doubled in the past 20 years. A divorce later in life can be a bit more complex than it might be for a younger couple who have not been married for long.

While it is common for challenges to arise when older couples divorce, some spouses can peacefully settle their differences without much fuss. Former Governor Sarah Palin and her ex-husband, Todd Palin, finalized their divorce after 31 years of marriage. They have five children and numerous grandchildren. Their youngest son is 12 and has special needs, so the Palins agreed to a shared custody plan for him.

Neither parent will be paying child support and the divorce was not contested. The former governor of Alaska did say she was shocked to learn her husband had filed the court documents and was saddened to have learned of his intentions to do so via email. It took a while to iron out all the details of their custody agreement, but overall, the Palins went their separate ways on amicable terms.

What should a concerned Texas spouse do if he or she anticipates legal problems during proceedings? A first logical step to take is to schedule a meeting with an experienced divorce attorney. Such an attorney can protect a client’s financial interests and parental rights and can make recommendations as to what might be a best course of action in a specific set of circumstances.