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What are the signs of financial abuse?

Navigating different priorities is something every successful marriage should do, but it is not always the case. Couples’ disagreements over finances, in particular, are one of the most common reasons for divorce. This can be a general attitude where one spouse prefers to spend money as fast as the family makes it (or more quickly), while the other wants to save for retirement, the kid's college fund, or other long-term goals. As long as the debt is sustainable and there is no deceit, things may work out.

Financial abuse, on the other hand, occurs when a spouse is deceitful about money matters. This kind of reckless behavior can put the well-being of the family at risk.

Common examples

The financial circumstances of each couple are unique, but some common examples include:

  1. Hiding money: A partner may secretly defer income, or put cash in a safety deposit box, open a bank account in their name or stash it away in a Casino Lockbox or office safe.
  2. Credit cards: He or she opens credit cards in the other spouse’s name without their knowledge and then maxes them out without making payments.
  3. Default on payments: Money earmarked to pay bills is channeled to shopping or to paramours, bad habits, or gambling, or the bills are simply ignored, any of which will destroy the couple’s credit rating.
  4. Borrowing money: The abuser may pressure a spouse to get money from other family members or friends.
  5. Career sabotage: The abuser refuses to let a spouse work outside the home or may take actions to endanger a spouse’s career.

Recurring patterns are a problem

Everyone has lapses in judgment when it comes to money. The problems arise when bad behavior becomes a pattern, which can be an indicator of future behavior. Experts warn that it may then lead to other patterns, if they have not already, of lying, controlling behavior, manipulation and isolating the victim from others.

Those in abusive relationships need to reach out for help, whether it is friends and family or professional counselors. One next step to taking back control of their life is for victims to discuss the matter with a Board-certified Family Law specialist expert attorney in Collin County, Dallas County, Denton County Midland County, Ector County, and surrounding areas of Texas. These legal professionals can help victims file for divorce and protect the client's parental and personal interests during this stressful process.

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