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Financial infidelity: worse than cheating?

Even if love is the foundation of your marriage, finances can also play a big part in how you feel about each other. Trusting each other with money can bring a couple closer together – or push them apart.

On the other hand, lying about money can be a form of financial infidelity. Hiding funds or spending money on secret purchases can turn couples against each other. A survey from found that nearly a quarter of respondents withheld financial details, such as an entirely separate bank account, from their partners.

Many couples view this behavior as a betrayal to the relationship. It’s even worse than other kinds of cheating, according to respondents with an income under $40,000. Although a spouse might not be planning to use the money on gifts for another romantic interest, their intentional deception can still be a distressing thought.

While dating or married couples need to draw their own lines when it comes to money honesty, divorcing couples have other concerns. Hidden accounts are a big deal in the asset division process when all information must be accurate to maintain fairness. When there are less reported assets to split, you could end up with a smaller amount than you should receive.

Whether your spouse began financial infidelity early in your marriage or they secretly opened a new account for divorce, you will have to discover the truth. About one in ten survey respondents said that they never held financial conversations with their partner, which can make it harder to detect inconsistencies. If you didn’t keep a close watch on your shared finances until now, your attorney will be indispensible to your efforts to track down missing assets.

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