My mother is getting a divorce, however, no separation agreement has been established and no mediation as of yet. My step-father has taken all of the joint money out of my mother’s and his joint savings account. This includes $6,000 of her own dollars. Her lawyer advised her not to leave the residence until there is a separation agreement. He seems to be using the joint monies to fix up the house. He plans on retiring next year, selling the home, and moving to another country. In the event that he leaves the country after the divorce proceedings, what guarantee would my mother have of him disbursing her her share of the joint assets? Also, he seems to be accumulating a lot of debt on his own cards. Will her share of their joint assets have to go to repaying his debts?
My advice to her was to start saving all her money in a separate checking account (not to be combined with pre-marital assets) and not to give him any money towards bills, mortgage, and the like.
What can someone do for themselves in this type of situation where it is obvious that one party is squandering money away before a separation agreement is made?