LGBT adults appear to be taking more steps to better save and prepare for retirement. On average, non-retired and retired LGBT adults report higher median net savings than the overall population. Over half of LGBT non-retirees (55%) report having a detailed retirement savings plan in place, compared to 42% of all adults. These LGBT respondents are more likely to have developed plans with a paid financial advisor (42%) while an additional 22% used web-based tools and calculators to assist in the process.
Nevertheless, concerns remain. Many LGBT respondents are concerned about saving enough for retirement (53%), and only 55% are confident they will be able to afford their current lifestyles in retirement. In a list of financial concerns, “saving for retirement” was the top concern for pre-retired LGBT respondents at 38%, followed by healthcare costs (18%) and paying monthly bills (16%).
LGBT adults with children consistently report more financial challenges, including preparing for retirement, than LGBT adults without children. LGBT with children feel less financially comfortable than those without (42% vs. 61%), and reported less confident in their financial future (40% with children vs. 68% without). LGBT with children are also twice as likely to report that high living expenses are limiting their ability to save for the future (51% with children vs. 26% without).
Almost all LGBT adults (92%) believe that within their lifetime, federal laws on survivor rights and benefits will become the same for same-sex couples as they are for heterosexual couples. Nearly half (43%) believe this will happen within the next three years, while 22% believe it will happen in the next four or five years.Despite heightened attention to same-sex marriage and civil unions, tremendous confusion remains around transfer rights and benefits for same-sex couples. Nearly half (44%) of LGBT respondents did not know that Social Security income and benefits are not transferable to the spouse or partner in a same sex couple. Similarly, fewer than half (41-47%) of LGBT respondents correctly answered that other assets and benefits like real estate (47%), life insurance (44%) and retirement savings (41%) may be transferable depending on the state in which the same-sex couple resides. Only 36% of LGBT adults know that Federal taxes on survivor assets or benefits are different for the spouse/partner in a same-sex marriage than in a heterosexual marriage.