Facing a divorce can be stressful. On top of dealing with the emotional aspect of ending your marriage, you may also be understandably worried about your financial future. A spiteful soon-to-be ex can exasperate these worries.
When Colorado couples share significant assets, one person may try to purposely fetter away significant amounts of money or interests to prevent the other from getting their equitable share. This is called dissipation of assets.
How can I be sure that what my partner is doing is dissipation?
There is a stark difference between spending money on necessities and minor luxuries — such as movie theater tickets or a new game — and frivolous spending. However, you might struggle to determine which side of the line your ex’s spending habits fall on. New expenses during a divorce are not necessarily uncommon as your ex or yourself might seek new living arrangements
If you suspect your ex might try to dissipate marital assets, you should carefully monitor all available financial statements and information. This can include:
- Credit card statements
- Investment documents
- Banking statements
- Real estate portfolios
How do I stop my ex from dissipating our marital assets?
You might be able to have a judge order an Automatic Temporary Restraining Order. An ATRO is a court-ordered document that prevents both you and your ex from altering the status quo of your marital finances. If your ex violates the order, he or she could face serious repercussions.
While an ATRO is extremely useful for stopping dissipation of assets in its track, it cannot necessarily account for what may have occurred before. If you believe that an ex plans to dissipate important marital assets, you should request an ATRO as early on in the divorce process as possible.
Protect your assets and your financial future
Certain marital assets hold significant financial value. Real estate and other investments can be difficult to quickly get rid of, but it is not impossible for a spiteful ex to squander these assets out of revenge. Some ex-spouses have spent thousands of frivolous dollars just to prevent their ex from receiving a truly equitable portion of the assets.
If an ex dissipated your valuable marital assets, there are resources readily available to help and support you. It can take a considerable amount of time to fully review related financial documents that might reveal an ex’s financial misconduct. This is usually best done under the guidance of a lawyer who is experienced in Colorado family law.