Domestic violence criminal charges are usually based on physical abuse, but there is a good chance that other forms of abuse will come up in the proceedings. If you are being charged with any type of domestic violence, you need to know some of the finer points about other types that might come up in your case. One of these is financial abuse.
You might not think anything about finances has to do with domestic violence; however, money is one of the ways that abusers try to control their victim. Not allowing the victim access to marital money or scrutinizing every way in which he or she spends money can often be construed as financial abuse.
It is true that some couples rely on one income to support the house. In these cases, as well as two-income homes, there is a fine line between financial abuse and a couple working together to make responsible decisions about finances. One of the main markers is that the victim of financial abuse is often clueless about the state of the marital finances. He or she might know that the bills are getting paid and might even get a small allowance, but everything related to the money is controlled by the abuser. The victim might not even have access to the marital checking account or other financial accounts.
Interestingly, there are also cases of financial abuse that involve the abuser forcing the victim to work while he or she sits at home. Even though the other party is the only income earner, the abuser still controls everything that has to do with money. The abuser might even specify when and where the victim can work, even if both parties have jobs.
It is estimated that 98 percent of domestic abuse cases involved some degree of financial abuse, so it isn’t any shock that this aspect of the relationship comes up in these cases. You should know your options for responding to these claims if they are made in your case.
Source: Break the Silence, “Financial Abuse: A Silent Form of Domestic Violence,” Brian Nguyen, accessed Jan. 02, 2018