Marriages have a wide range of reasons to deteriorate. Often these reasons are classified as irreconcilable differences during divorce, but the prominent reasoning behind these differences is a breach in trust. Attorney Steve Mindel believes that “fundamentally, marriages are built on trust, and anytime you breach the trust of the other party, it damages the relationship.” Obviously promiscuousness and sexual infidelity will be topics that solicit a great deal tension and distrust between couples, but what continues to be an even greater seedling for divorce is financial infidelity. Here are nine money lies that can inflict serious damage on your marriage.
1. Hide your inheritance
Lying about inheritance is easy to spot if your spouse monitors tax returns. Unless you plan on lying to the IRS, which is not advised, you will have to report your monthly inheritance as taxable income.
2. Hide lottery winnings
There is a prominent case about a California woman who hid her lottery winnings from her husband while they were still married. Years later when they divorced the husband ended up walking away with all of her lottery earnings. “Now, more states across the country are imposing penalties for spouses that fail to properly disclose financial information to their spouses,” Mindel says.
3. Keep a secret bank account
Keeping money that is off the books in a secret bank account during a marriage does not mean that it belongs to you in the event of a divorce. Many people do not fully understand the concept of joint property that accompanies marriage. Your partner will still get half of the account even if it is only in your name.
4. Lying about being laid off
This will cause your marriage and finances to decay. Lying about job loss will create a false sense of security for your spouse and usual spending habits will take perpetuate with no income to support them.
5. Frivolous spending or gambling of disposable income
Any vice that uses disposable income will be volatile for a marriage. If addiction is the issue, take necessary steps to confront your addiction or your marriage will be jeopardized.
6. Hiding student debt
Be candid with your partner about previous debts before marriage. If they are not confronted directly, they will likely evolve into a debt that is unmanageable.
7. Lying about getting a raise
In the event of a divorce, a court can award greater spousal support as a penalty if you are found to have concealed the full amount of your income.
8. Lying about Mortgage status
If you are upside down on your mortgage and you withhold this information from your spouse, your relationship will very likely end up in divorce. This happens more often when there is a stay at home spouse hiding bills and voice mail from bill collectors. When the lie bursts, it can have a harrowing effect to the spouse unaware of the situation.
9. Hiding an online shopping addiction
Marriage and family therapist, Paul Hokemeyer, says that secretive spending “destroys relationships because the non-spending partner typically has no clue over the extent of the spending that’s going on and wakes up to a bankruptcy or unmanageable debt that in turns makes them feel betrayed, taken advantage of and humiliated.”