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Lies about money may foreshadow divorce

Financial issues are a source of conflict for many couples. Sometimes, they lie to avoid conflict or to cover up wrongdoing. Lies can also be red flags that there are larger issues in the marriage.

Finding out a spouse has lied to you about money can be devastating. Too many people only learn the truth during a divorce. In a 2014 survey, a third of respondents admitted to lying to their partner or spouse about money. A third said they had been lied to. Over three-quarters said that these lies led to arguments, loss of trust and/or divorce. Some lies can be indicative of serious problems.

One spouse's debt can impact the financial health and the credit of both, even after they divorce. That's why lying about whether you have any or how much can have serious consequences. It's important for spouses to know about each other's debt and how they accumulated it. It could be a sign of problems managing money, overspending or a gambling problem.

Another red flag is a lie about how much money a spouse makes. When couples combine their finances, both should know how much money is coming in so that they can budget accordingly. Lies about income could mean that someone is hiding assets, possibly in preparation for a divorce, or spending the money on someone or something he or she doesn't want his or her partner to know about.

Having a bank account your spouse doesn't know about can be a sign of similar issues. While many couples keep separate accounts, hiding an account can be a sign that a spouse is planning to leave the relationship.

People may not tell their spouse that they have lent money to family or friends or the true amount of a loan because they want to avoid a fight. However, when it's shared money, the other spouse has a right to know.

Financial secrets and lies can be signs of issues in a relationship or problems that one person is trying to hide from their partner. However, if you are planning to leave a relationship and have concerns about your spouse making off with all of the money in your joint accounts, it may be wise to sock away some money to live on in the immediate aftermath of a split. It's wise to consult with a family law attorney about this and other such preparations.

Source: Business Insider, "6 money lies that can destroy your relationship," Libby Kane, April. 10, 2015

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Commandments of Family Law

  1. The only truth your children need to know is that you both love them unconditionally, and that this isn't their fault.
  2. Take the high road — everyone wins when you do what's best for your kids.
  3. Negotiate but don't capitulate — if you are being pushed toward something detrimental for your children, stand your ground.
  4. You can only control yourself and how you respond. Don't engage.
  5. Do set up rules and responsibilities. Kids feel better when routine is continued.
  6. You are still their parent — don't be afraid to be one.
  7. Disneyland is in California, not in your home. Don't set up unreasonable expectations.
  8. It is not their job to take care of you. Repeat that to them. Often.
  9. Yelling is for sports — not court. Good lawyers strongly advocate without being disrespectful to opposing parties.
  10. Fair is a place you go to get cheese curds. Aside from that, nothing in life is fair.

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