Why Women Should Rethink Their Finances After Divorce

 The best way to overcome any fear you might have about taking the reins on your financial life is to get educated. (Getty Images)

The best way to overcome any fear you might have about taking the reins on your financial life is to get educated. (Getty Images)

via @US News and World Report

Getting a divorce stands to be as budget-breaking as it is heart-wrenching, especially for women.

"The dynamic is changing a little as more women are staying in the workforce and continuing and accelerating their careers, but typically, divorce hits women harder than men," says Nicole Mayer, a certified divorce financial analyst and partner at financial planning firm RPG Life Transition Specialists in Riverwoods, Illinois.

Indeed, marriage tends to offer some financial advantage. Married women's median weekly earnings were about 20 percent higher than those of women of other marital statuses, including never-married, divorced, separated and widowed, according to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. They even earn 9.6 percent more than unmarried men (but 23.4 percent less than married men).

After divorce, specifically, women's household income fell by 41 percent, on average, almost double the loss men experience, according to a 2012 report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Read why is divorce so much more detrimental for women financially.