How To Deal With Identity Theft If It’s Your Spouse

Identity theft need not necessarily be a stranger or hacker it can be happening right under your nose. Yes, it may be your spouse. By opening an account in your name without permission refers to financial infidelity. The sensitivity of the issue is such that it can have far-reaching effects on both your relationship and financial security.

Your decision to handle identity theft depends entirely on how you want to look at and treat your relationship in the future.

Freeze Your Credit

The first and foremost step is to freeze your credit.

The credit freeze will send a clear message to lenders that you are willing or stopping anyone from opening additional accounts in your name and make sure this is communicated to your spouse on the update about the freeze.

The freeze comes with a cost and is not completely reliable. A fraud alert on your report is effective and requires an official identity theft report though. Hence, you must file charges.

Decide Your Continuity In The Relationship

Your identity is stolen which means you will have to press charges against your spouse and once that is done the debt can be written off.

On the emotional side, if you want the relationship to prolong, then stay away from this option. Consider, it happened because your spouse has too many debts to pay and did this without informing you. Approaching a counselor seems to be the only way out to patch up and make up for the broken trust and repair the relationship.

Finally, if you want to stay away from your partner be ready to protect your money, assets that were being transferred into your account.

Close all the joint accounts with immediate effect.

Rebuilding Your Relationship

Regaining the trust that was lost requires a considerable amount of time and efforts. A counselor can mediate to put things in place. Nevertheless, the move to get back to your spouse allows you to protect both yourself and the finances in the future.

Follow these approaches to return on track:

  • Split finances for a short period.
  • Shared expenses to handle the household budget.
  • Open a checking account to separate your income from your spouse.
  • Regular accountability meetings to discuss goals, review expenses.

Proceeding Legally

The failure to maintain trust in a relationship eventually will lead to a divorce. The existence of debts can force the laws to impose the responsibility of paying off. A chat with your attorney can throw light on pressing charges for identity theft and taking off the debt of your credit report completely.

Be patient as the processes can take its time to arrive at a conclusive solution.

Credit Monitoring

Monitoring your credit is something you need to do by default in the future. The pandemic has emptied people’s money and the dearth in cash may force hackers to illegally draw money from your accounts. Always have liquid cash for daily expenses and utility bills or try payment apps to make sure you don’t use your debit cards or net banking and attract intruders. Change your passwords frequently and be active even if you are not carrying out any financial transactions.

Stick To Your Decisions

Discrepancies in money matters can end relationships. Financial discussions are difficult if you fail to align your thoughts in the same wavelength as your spouse while that is not a concern for relationships. 

A healthy relationship is one that develops by interpreting what the other person is thinking and it transforms in every single move. In a nutshell, be smart by keeping aside funds that can come into play whether there is identity theft, you’re in a relationship, or have called off because survival is an instinct never stop it from justifying it.

By Karthick V.