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Financial Abuse: The Overlooked Form of Domestic Violence


Your spouse withholding money from you and not letting you enjoy any fruits of your labor can count as financial abuse. As well as when they are continuously invading your financial privacy or not allowing you to go to work to earn money.

Usually, when domestic violence in Nevada is discussed, the tangible acts of physical and mental abuse is what is often focused on. What many do not realize is there is a subtle but far more harmful type of abuse to the victim’s wellbeing. This is called financial abuse and it happens more frequently than one might think. On this article, we look into financial abuse in a Nevada domestic violence case and what could happen if you find yourself arrested of its charges.

Signs of financial abuse

An abusive relationship usually originates from money problems. For example, when the abuser cannot gamble because the spouse cannot give money, hitting or verbal abuse can follow. Financial abuse is perpetrated and so victims feel more trapped than ever before. In hindsight, financial abuse is a precursor to other major types of abuse and can also be solely done to freeze a victim on his or her current state.

Now, what are the common signs of financial abuse in a domestic relationship? If you think you are the one experiencing it or even the one doing it to your loved one, you should look for these signs:

  • Money is taken or withdrawn without permission
  • Disproval of all of the budget plans
  • Not giving of money that is needed
  • Threats when money is not given
  • Forceful signing of documents
  • Victim feels scared when talking about finances
  • Victim ultimately has no say about financial decisions in the family

Domestic violence on elders is also usually financial abuse. Since most of them are not capable of handling their finances, other people, especially family members, take advantage of them and perform financial exploitation. This is through unauthorized pocketing of their money from the bank or harming them because they have a trust fund.

Penalties of financial abuse

According to Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) 200.5099, anyone who is found guilty of elder exploitation shall face either a gross misdemeanor or a category C felony depending on the severity of the offenses.

What are the punishments when someone is convicted of financial abuse against the non-elderly?

Unfortunately, financial abuse is not actually considered as a form of domestic violence by some territories in the State of Nevada. When you apply for a protection order against the abuser in Reno, Nevada, it seems like you will not be granted if it is in the grounds of financial abuse.

While there are no specific penalties, financial abuse in a domestic setting can still be justified as domestic violence in Nevada in the court, most especially if there are other types of abuse that transpired because of it. Costs of domestic violence in Nevada are a misdemeanor for milder charges and a category C felony if done for the third time within seven years or has serious implications.

Defenses against false financial abuse charges

If you have only realized that you might be the perpetrator of financial abuse in your family then it is best that you fix yourself with a legal advisor particularly if there is a possible arrest on sight. Once on trial, you can consider these defenses along with your representative:

  • For elder financial exploitation, you can say that the elderly was making false claims out of spite or because of confusion
  • For standard financial abuse accusations, you can counter that you are only withholding finances because your partner uses it for gambling or other types of addiction
  • You can also argue that the money being taken out of a bank account was not your fault and is due to other factors such as bank mishap
  • Of course, all of these stands must be backed up by convincing pieces of evidence

Since financial abuse can be subtle, even the perpetrator cannot realize that he or she is guilty of it. When accused of the domestic violence that is made distinct by financial abuse, enlist the help of a criminal defense attorney in Las Vegas and elsewhere in Nevada immediately.

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