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When people hear the phrase “domestic violence,” they usually think of physical or emotional abuse. However, financial abuse is often the first sign of domestic violence in a relationship. Knowing what financial abuse is and how it can impact victims is vital if you’re involved in a situation like this with an intimate partner.
If you’re facing the severe charge of domestic violence, you should reach out to an experienced criminal defense attorney. They can thoroughly investigate the claim and represent you throughout the case.
What Is Financial Abuse?
Financial abuse involves a person controlling their partner’s ability to earn, use, and maintain their own finances. Rarely do victims have access to monetary funds, and when they do have money, they have to detail where and how they spend every cent. In general, the forms of financial abuse vary by situation, but the abuser’s goal is always the same: to gain power over the other and control the relationship.
What Are the Impacts of Financial Abuse?
The effects of any type of abuse are devastating. Victims often feel uncertain of themselves due to the emotional abuse that accompanies financial manipulation. Those suffering from financial abuse sometimes have to go without food or water since they don’t have access to money and their abuser refuses to buy any.
Victims are also more likely to experience physical abuse as time progresses. By not having access to credit or debit cards and cash, they do not have the funds needed to buy a ticket or rent another apartment.
Financial abuse victims also usually have minimal work experience and poor credit. In addition, they likely have collection agencies looking for unpaid debts. Many victims even stay with their abusers because they have no financial stability outside of the relationship.
Overall, financial abuse is very isolating for victims, as they can only rely on their abusers, trapping them into an abusive relationship, and they’re afraid to reach out to family or friends in fear it will make the situation worse.
Financial Abuse Tactics
Some abusers may use multiple tactics on their victims, while others may only use one. Regardless of how many they employ, it’s still considered to be financial abuse. Here are some of the tactics abusers use:
When a partner tries to control your ability to earn income, they are interfering with the victim’s career. Some examples of job interference include:
- Criticizing your job performance
- Pressuring you to quit your job
- Sabotaging your work
- Harassing you at work
In some cases, they may even prevent their victims from going to work by stealing their car keys or taking their car without permission.
Abusers may try to control the money their partner has already earned or saved and exploit their funds. Some examples include:
- Using assets for personal gain
- Taking money without permission
- Feeling entitled to your money
- Demanding that you turn over your paycheck
- Confiscating paychecks
- Expecting you to pay all the bills
Abusers may also threaten to report you to your employer or law enforcement that you are misusing benefits or earning money through illegal activities.
Misuse of Shared Finances
Married couples often combine their finances into one account, but this could lead to abusers completely taking over by:
- Criticizing the other’s spending habits
- Making large financial decisions independently
- Refusing to work or contribute to bills
- Hiding or taking funds
- Withholding financial information
- Limiting access to bank accounts
Competent Criminal Defense Attorney in California Will Protect Your Rights
Financial abuse hurts victims and their families. An accusation of domestic violence can change the course of your life. If you have been accused of domestic violence in California, you must act quickly and hire a domestic violence lawyer. Attorney Dod of Dod Law will work to mitigate the impact of a domestic violence charge and protect your rights. For a free consultation, complete our contact form or call (619) 814-5110.