In some married Georgia couples, one spouse might be more controlling than the other, especially when it comes to finances. When headed for divorce, that could be a bad thing. Those controlling spouses would tend to look, not at the money itself, but at how they might use it to 'win' in the divorce settlement. For the spouse married to the controller, there are some measures to take before the divorce.
One measure is to begin accumulating money that only that person has control over and access to. Whether through a job or an allowance from an employed spouse, a stash of money will help get a person through some of the tougher times of the divorce. Another measure is to make copies of all types of financial statements that are held jointly by both spouses. Those statements may be presented to the court and the balances on those statements will help determine the ultimate financial settlement in the divorce.
Having separate banking and retirement accounts as well as credit cards is another measure to take. Even with an agreeable divorce, any joint accounts or credit cards should be terminated, even if those accounts are used for expenses for matters such as children from the marriage or mortgage payments. It is also a good idea to get before a judge as soon as possible. The judge will be the one who supervises the division of assets from that point on.
For the spouse with the least control in a relationship like this, giving up that little bit of power he or she has could be hard but something that may be beneficial in the end. Being able to convey a do-not care attitude may actually help get the desired outcome since it takes away some of the motivation for the bullying spouse to continue in their game-playing. In Georgia, it is often best to study the legal options for financial protection during a divorce before actually taking action.
Source: USA Today, "Protect your finances while divorcing a bully," Elizabeth MacBride, June 23, 2013