More than Half of Survey Respondents Might Consider Divorce Because of Debt
In movies and TV shows, marriages often break up because of adulterous affairs exposed in the most dramatic way possible. However, many real-life divorces can be traced to missed credit card payments and repossessed vehicles. A lost job, failed business, medical emergency or unhealthy habit could threaten a family’s ability to make basic needs. These pressures also take a toll on relationships.
Financial woes can generate resentment and recrimination, especially when spouses disagree over expenditures or when one tries to hide their spending habits from the other. A survey shows that 54 percent of respondents would consider their partner’s debt problems as a reason for divorce. Paying close attention to financial concerns is a crucial element of a healthy relationship. Fortunately, there are ways you can try to head off money-based marital strife.
Your best course is to rein in overspending before it arises, or as soon as possible after you notice it’s a problem. A good first step is to assess your family’s income stream and spending needs honestly, then develop a budget that reflects that reality. From there, you should periodically review and, where necessary, revise your budget as circumstances warrant.
Unfortunately, some people have difficulty keeping their spending habits within budgetary limits. One way to safeguard your interests in the event that you do divorce is to create a marital agreement. Many couples negotiate prenuptial agreements before they are wed, but you can also develop a postnuptial agreement if a concern arises during the course of the marriage.
Even if you don’t have a marital agreement in place, an experienced divorce lawyer can work on your behalf to pursue an appropriate property division order. If your spouse squandered martial assets without your knowledge or misled you about their true financial situation, that should be reflected when the marital estate is divided. One potential strategy is to argue that obligations secretly run up by your spouse constitute separate debts. This way your ex would be solely responsible for those obligations when your marriage is dissolved.
The lawyers at Bryan L. Salamone & Associates, P.C., in Melville negotiate marital agreements and represent New York spouses during divorce proceedings. To schedule your free initial consultation with an attorney at Long Island’s leading divorce law firm, call 1.631.479.3839 or contact us online.