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Many divorcees are shocked to find that their financial reality in no way reflects what they’d assumed about their situation. Some suddenly realize that they are on the hook for considerable debt they never knew existed. Others learn that their spouse has been stashing away income for months or even years in hopes of one day minimizing alimony or child support. These revelations often occur far too late.

The sooner you gain a clear sense of your financial situation, the better capable you and your attorney are of securing the best possible resolution during the divorce process. As you determine where you stand, keep an eye out for these common signs of financial obfuscation:

Huge Cash Withdrawals Were Never Accounted For

Did large amounts of money suddenly leave your shared accounts for no reason? What happened to all of this cash? If you remain clueless, financial infidelity could be to blame.

You — Or Somebody Else — Received Huge Gifts Seemingly Out of Nowhere

Did your stingy ex suddenly become generous at some point? Whether that generosity was directed at you or somebody else, it could be a sign of financial manipulation. Spouses who expect to seek divorce may attempt to obfuscate their assets by giving expensive gifts to adult children, siblings, parents, or even paramours.

Your Ex Refuses — Or Has Refused in the Past — to Discuss Finances

Spouses who commit financial infidelity prefer for their partner to be kept as much in the dark as possible. Often, they will refuse to engage in any talk of finances whatsoever. This refusal continues long after the divorce process has been initiated. If you’ve pursued mediation, you may notice your spouse clamming up as soon as you delve into finances in any detail.

Regardless of your current financial situation, you deserve support from a family attorney you can trust. Look to the law firm of Barna, Guzy & Steffen, Ltd. for assistance every step of the way.