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Financial dishonesty: What are the odds?

| May 28, 2016 | Property Division |

Expecting trust in a marriage is one thing, but when dividing marital property during a divorce in Georgia, it may seem unreasonable to have faith that your ex-partner is telling the truth about his or her finances. This may particularly be true when dishonesty was a factor in the destruction of your relationship. According to the National Endowment for Financial Education, 2014 Harris Poll survey data indicate that many marriages involve hidden assets.

More than 2,000 American adults participated in this survey, which asked questions about financial deceptions in marriage. NEFE states that of these, 13 percent of the participants admitted they have been dishonest with their spouses about significant amounts of money, either spent or earned. If you uncovered evidence before the separation, or if you have not yet had your suspicions confirmed, you may still decide that you want to look for clues before reaching a settlement. Missing bill statements, reluctance to discuss finances or unexplained receipts may be signals that your hunch is correct.

The effects on survey respondents’ relationships reflect the damage that financial lies can do, with 76 percent stating that these have affected their marriages. It appears that many of the falsehoods stemmed from spouses’ belief that they should not have to share all the details about their personal finances. Regardless of the reasoning, discussions about money can cause significant distress. However, experts explain that the issues are too important to gloss over. The statistics and other information provided here are for educational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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