Know Your Family Finances … Before It’s Too Late, Due to Death, Illness or Divorce

All too often, one spouse knows virtually nothing about the family’s financial picture.

Even if the other spouse “takes care of” or “handles” all of that sort of thing with only the very best of intentions, this is a dangerous situation for the coddled spouse.

Never mind the possibility of divorce, for a moment.

What if the financial-caretaking spouse unexpectedly dies? Or suffers a devastating, incapacitating injury or illness?

How will the healthy spouse figure out and pick up the pieces, and manage the situation for the family, even on a temporary basis?

And if either spouse decides to divorce, best intentions may fly out the window.

The coddled spouse is at a severe disadvantage in determining and weighing their courses of action and options.

Depending on the particular circumstances of the case, they may have guaranteed that obtaining full and fair disclosure will be far more time-consuming and expensive than it has to be. And it is so unnecessary.

The coddled spouse is entitled to know about the family finances. And should, for the sake of all concerned, including the couple’s children.

A spouse who refuses to see that and insists upon maintaining total financial secrecy is raising a big red flag. And that should inspire the coddled spouse to take remedial action … and to educate him or herself by consulting an attorney.

Read more in this Wall Street Journal piece: VOICES: Leslie Thompson, On the Uninformed Spouse.