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Avoiding pitfalls that can lead to divorce

One of the leading causes of divorces in Massachusetts is arguments about finances. Studies have demonstrated that couples who argue with each other about money early on in their marriages are much more likely to later divorce.

A recent study showed that financial infidelity is much more common than previously thought. The study found that 6 percent of people have secret bank accounts that their spouses do not know about. It also found that 20 percent of survey respondents believe spending $500 without telling their spouses is fine. According to the Wall Street Journal, people engage in secret spending in several different ways. Some withdraw small amounts at the ATM, saving them up over time and then spending it. Others keep purchased gift cards to use for themselves in order to hide their spending. Still others may open credit cards about which their spouses don't know.

In order to help prevent such behavior, it is a good idea for spouses to see a credit counselor together so they can be honest about the debts each holds. They should also keep lines of communication about their finances open and honestly discuss them with each other.

In the event a couple does decide to divorce due to financial conflict, they may want to get the help of their respective family law attorneys. When one spouse suspects the other one of financial infidelity, an attorney may be able to track down and locate any hidden bank accounts that the other one has opened. Legal counsel may also be able to negotiate an agreement with the other spouse that helps to ensure the client receives a fair share of the marital property.

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