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We recognize the significance of addressing the often hidden and harmful impact of financial abuse in domestic violence situations. In this feature, we will define financial abuse, explain its risks, provide guidance on next steps, and offer crucial resources for assistance.

What is Financial Abuse? Financial abuse is a form of control and manipulation where an abuser exerts power by controlling a victim's financial resources, restricting access to money, and sabotaging their financial independence. This tactic can include withholding funds, restricting access to bank accounts, exploiting credit or assets, and preventing employment or education opportunities. Financial abuse can leave survivors trapped in dangerous situations, making it difficult to escape or seek help.


Recognizing the Risks:

Domestic violence financial abuse poses significant risks to survivors and their families, such as:

  • Limited access to basic needs like food, shelter, and medical care

  • Forbidding the victim to work

  • Sabotaging work or employment opportunities

  • Hiding assets

  • Ruining victims credit score  

  • Financial dependence that makes leaving the abuser more challenging

  • Lowered self-esteem and feelings of helplessness

  • Prolonged exposure to abuse due to economic constraints

  • Difficulty in maintaining stable housing or employment

Taking Positive Steps:

If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence financial abuse, taking positive steps towards safety and empowerment is essential:

  • Secure Your Safety: If you are in immediate danger, call 911 or your local emergency number.

  • Create a Safety Plan: Develop a personalized safety plan to protect yourself and your children. Include financial considerations in your plan.

  • Document Financial Abuse: Maintain records of financial abuse, including bank statements, bills, and any communication related to finances.

  • Reach Out for Support: Contact the San Joaquin County Family Justice Center for confidential assistance. If you have children, the San Joaquin Department of Child Support Services is a valuable resource.

Resources and Support:

We are committed to helping you navigate the challenges of domestic violence financial abuse. Reach out to the San Joaquin County Family Justice Center for comprehensive support. Here are additional resources for more information:

Empower Yourself, Seek Help Today: Contact the San Joaquin County Family Justice Center for confidential assistance, guidance, and support. Your well-being is our priority.

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