Most of the time, changes in financial behavior accompany classic non-money signs of marital trouble: lack of communication, stress, physical separation, arguments, and isolation. But it helps to be on the lookout for financial signs on their own.
And here's a good list:
- Your spouse argues about money.
- Seems to be hiding money.
- Has no explanation for why money is missing.
- Has stopped direct deposits to your joint bank account.
- Puts you on a budget and demands an accounting of all of your spending.
- Makes large cash withdrawals.
- Pays for his/her own credit card bills - or better yet, has his/her mail sent to the office.
- Goes on more business trips than usual and has greater travel and entertainment expenses.
- Blindsides you with gifts and trips.
- Reduces contributions to savings or retirement. Excess cash is now spent or socked away somewhere else.
- Takes out loans because it is a "smart" financial decision during times of low interest rates.
Along with these changed behaviors, there's a whole other set of red flags to look out for: a noticeable turn for the worse in how your spouse talks about his or her earnings, workplace achievements, or business prospects. He or she starts complaining a lot about money - how business is bad, how jobs are at risk, how this year's bonus is in doubt.
If your spouse is suddenly and remarkably gloomy about his or her ability to make money, this might be premeditated strategy to lower your financial expectations in a divorce. Attorneys even have a name for it: RAIDS, for "recently acquired income deficiency syndrome."
On the bright side, if you are familiar with your spouse's business, customers, and performance reviews, it will be hard for your spouse to paint a credible picture of unexpected gloom. So keep your eyes set on financial reality and do your homework if your spouse complains in detail about the following:
- His/her earnings potential is at its peak and is at risk.
- Bonuses are reduced or nonexistent.
- Company layoffs are imminent or overdue.
- The employer has declining revenues and sales.Clients are deserting the company.His/her sales territory has been cut despite solid job performance.
- It's the economy, stupid!
- His/her age is a negative factor in the business, and he/she is at risk of being fired for being too old.
- Our family spending is rampant and unsustainable with probable loss of income or job.
If you start hearing these complaints, it's time to organize your financial wits and get a handle on your financial lifestyle. If you're surprised to have a spouse who seems to be premeditating divorce, empower yourself and seek out the advice of an attorney.
Should you be in the midst of a divorce or contemplating divorce, contact the Law Offices of Renee Lazar either through email or telephone 978-844-4095 to schedule a free one hour no obligation consultation.