Financial clues may warn you that divorce is coming: Part II

Earlier this week, we began a discussion about financial clues that could indicate a spouse’s intention to divorce. In too many instances, one spouse in a marriage begins planning the divorce in complete secrecy, only “dropping the bomb” when they have finished making their own preparations.

According to divorce financial planner Lili A. Vasileff, certain changes in your spouse’s financial behavior and attitudes could be signs that he or she is secretly planning for divorce. In addition to some of the behaviors we mentioned in our first post, your spouse may suddenly start projecting a gloomy outlook about their future earning potential or financial security.

This could be an attempt to lower your expectations of the eventual divorce settlement. Vasileff says that some attorneys call this behavior “recently acquired income deficiency syndrome,” or RAIDS.

If your spouse has always complained about his or her job, continued complaining is probably not a red flag. But if your spouse seems to have come down with a case of RAIDS, he or she may suddenly:

  • Start warning you that the company is headed for massive layoffs
  • Complain that business is slow (and therefore bonuses and promotions are in jeopardy)
  • Say that his/her job is on the line
  • Allege that the family is spending too much money in light of the gloomy outlook at work
  • Say anything else with the apparent goal of lowering your financial expectations about his or her earning potential

While RAIDS is obviously not a real medical condition, it could be a real warning sign that divorce is on the horizon. If you notice that your spouse has started exhibiting RAIDS symptoms or is engaging in other suspicious financial behaviors, you may need to start doing your own research.

Except in certain circumstances (usually involving abuse or domestic violence), it is cruel for one spouse to engage in surreptitious divorce planning with plans of “dropping the bomb” later on. Unfortunately, this happens with surprising frequency. If you are worried about behaviors and attitudes that seem to indicate an impending divorce, a first step may be talking it over with your spouse. If that doesn’t work, you might want to start looking for an experienced family law attorney.

Source: TIME, “11 Financial Clues That Your Spouse Wants a Divorce,” Lili A. Vasileff, March 19, 2015

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