SEPARATE YOURSELF FINANCIALLY FROM YOUR EX-SPOUSE
1. Don’t bank where your ex-spouse banks. I remember receiving a phone call from an ex-husband who told me that his ex-wife was accessing his separate banking information through a friendly bank employee at the same bank where they kept a joint account during their marriage. Of course, the friendly bank employee’s actions were both illegal and against bank policy. Nonetheless, this stuff happens. So, after your divorce is final, separate your primary bank from your ex-spouse’s bank. You can always have an account at the same bank if you are paying support via direct deposit.
2. Get new credit cards and cancel any credit cards you had with your ex-spouse. There should be no reason that I have to explain this one.
3. Don’t use the same tax preparer, accountant or CPA, because even though these professional are forbidden to comment about you to your ex-spouse, you don’t know about their lower paid and non-licensed staff. Once again, separate yourself financially from your ex-spouse.
4. You don’t want to be using the same stock broker or financial advisor as your ex-spouse, especially if your ex-spouse is also a social friend or golf buddy of the stock broker/financial advisor.
5. Change your passwords on all of your financial accounts, and sweep your computers for tracking software. Yes, ex-spouses spy on each other all of the time. They can probably even teach the NSA a thing or two about computer spying.
6. Finally, get a new cellular phone and a new cellular phone number. I know this is chore, but your ex-spouse can also obtain financial information about you from your cell phone, which you are probably using to both text and connect to the internet.
These are some of the most common “backdoor” ways an ex-spouse can keep tabs on your financial affairs. Now, all of this may sound like I’m advising you to be paranoid, but as the old saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”