PARSIPPANY, N.J., March 19, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Family law expert Bari Z. Weinberger recently spoke before a gathering of domestic violence victim advocates about the devastating impact of financial abuse and the available legal remedies for helping victims break free.
Hosted by the YWCA of Union County domestic violence team, the event, "Rebuilding After Financial Abuse: A Workshop For Advocates," highlighted the abusive control tactic frequently used to keep victims of domestic violence trapped in place.
"Financial abuse occurs when an abusive partner prevents their spouse from accessing money and other financial resources, even if it's their own income. It's a form of extreme isolation and control in which victims are so economically cut off that they can lack enough money for the bus ticket to get them to a shelter," described Ms. Weinberger.
Financial abuse coincides with other forms of domestic violence, including physical assault, sexual assault and emotional or psychological abuse. As Weinberger noted, virtually all domestic violence cases — 99 percent — are affected by some form of financial abuse.
"When an abusive partner takes away your paycheck…when they physically punish you for going over your 'allowance' for groceries…when they take out credit cards or loans in your name without your consent or knowledge…when they give you a black eye right before your big job interview so you can't go…this is financial abuse," Ms. Weinberger noted.
Partners who are financially abusive want their victims to feel insecure and fearful about their ability to support themselves and their children should they ever attempt to leave. Weinberger countered this control mechanism in her talk by stating plainly:
"It's time to share a very important message with victims of financial abuse: You can get out. You can be safe. You can afford to live."
Ms. Weinberger outlined key legal remedies for safeguarding victims of financial abuse, including:
- Applying for a temporary restraining order to block contact with the abuser.
- Temporary spousal support to provide money for living expenses, including rent and food.
- Temporary child support to provide for child-related expenses.
- Obtaining court-ordered access to joint accounts and victim's income.
- Attorney assistance for contacting credit agencies and/or explaining credit/income gaps on job applications.
"When we make victims of financial abuse aware of the many resources and tools available to them, we do something priceless…we help these people become survivors. It's our job to spread awareness about all the help and support that are out there," Ms. Weinberger advises.
Weinberger Divorce & Family Law Group, the firm founded by Bari Weinberger, has made her presentation publicly available for social sharing: Rebuilding After Financial Abuse.
Bari Z. Weinberger
SOURCE Weinberger Divorce & Family Law Group