Retire Sooner Highlight: Tracy Coenen Advises on Safeguarding Your Finances from Marital Fraud

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In this Retire Sooner Highlight, we focus on Tracy Coenen, a renowned financial fraud investigator and forensic accountant who has dedicated her career to safeguarding people’s finances. In this article, she shares her expert advice on protecting your finances from marital fraud, an issue that affects many couples who are approaching retirement. Tracy’s insights provide valuable information that can help you secure your financial future and avoid the devastating impact of fraud in your marriage. So, read on to discover Tracy’s tips and insights on how to safeguard your finances and retire with peace of mind.

Retire Sooner Highlight: Tracy Coenen Advises on Safeguarding Your Finances from Marital Fraud


Marriage is a beautiful bond between two individuals who commit to sharing their lives and finances. While it is essential to trust your spouse, it is equally important to stay informed and aware of your financial situation. Sadly, financial fraud is a growing concern, and it can happen to anyone, even in a marriage. According to forensic accountant Tracy Coenen, staying informed is the first step to safeguarding your finances from marital fraud. In this article, we’ll explore some tips and techniques to protect your finances from your partner’s wrongdoings.

Consistently staying informed is the best strategy

Staying informed is the key to safeguarding your finances. As a spouse, you must review all the account statements regularly and keep track of your financial situation. This process may seem tedious, but it is crucial, primarily if you don’t handle the finances in your marriage. Coenen advises individuals to become knowledgeable about their finances and learn to recognize red flags indicating possible fraud.

Keep an eye on statement every single month

One of the most effective ways to detect financial fraud in a marriage is by keeping an eye on account statements every month. Check all the bills, credit card statements, and bank statements to ensure that they represent legitimate expenses made by you or your partner. Fraudulent activity may often go unnoticed for months or even years, and it’s crucial to be aware of where your money is going every month.

Staying informed reduces the likelihood of financial fraud

Staying informed is one of the best methods for protecting yourself from financial fraud in a marriage. The more you know about your finances, the lower the risk of fraudulent activity taking place. If you are not financially savvy, take some time to educate yourself. There are many resources available online, such as books, blogs, and podcasts, that can help you learn about financial management.

Lack of communication and trust increases the risk of financial fraud

According to Coenen, lack of communication and trust are some of the leading factors contributing to financial fraud in marriages. If you don’t trust your spouse, it’s challenging to stay informed and be aware of your financial situation. Poor communication can also lead to misunderstandings about finances, causing one spouse to take advantage of the other. Therefore, clear communication and trust are essential for building a healthy relationship and safeguarding your finances.

Tips and techniques are available for what to look for every month

Several tips and techniques can help you detect financial fraud in a marriage. For example, look for unusual withdrawals, checks, or debit card transactions. Also, look for charges on your credit card that you didn’t make. Keep an eye on your credit report to ensure that no new credit accounts have been opened in your name without your knowledge. These are just some of the warning signs of financial fraud that you should look for every month.

Non-participation in the financial process poses a risk

If one spouse doesn’t participate in the financial process, it puts them at risk of being taken advantage of in a financially fraudulent scheme. By being actively involved in household finances, both parties remain accountable for their spending, and any discrepancies can be rectified early on.

The person with the purse strings can do whatever they want if their spouse is not informed

Suppose one spouse is the sole breadwinner or controls the finances within the marriage. They may manipulate finances to avoid detection and use their partner’s trust to cover their tracks. If you’re not consistently staying informed, you may not notice when something is amiss. As such, the importance of staying informed cannot be overstated.


  1. How can I protect myself from financial fraud in my marriage?
    Answer: Stay informed and consistently review all account statements each month.

  2. What should I look for when reviewing my financial statements?
    Answer: Look for unusual transactions, unfamiliar charges, and any red flags indicating fraudulent activity.

  3. Should both spouses be involved in household finances?
    Answer: Yes, both spouses should be actively involved in household finances to ensure mutual accountability and financial protection.

  4. What increases the likelihood of financial fraud in a marriage?
    Answer: Poor communication and lack of trust increase the likelihood of financial fraud in a marriage.

  5. Is it essential to educate yourself about finances to protect yourself from financial fraud?
    Answer: Yes, it is essential to learn about financial management to detect and prevent financial fraud in a marriage.


In conclusion, cases of financial fraud in marriage are increasing in today’s society. Being aware and alert can reduce the risk of your partner’s wrongdoing. Reviewing all statements every month, actively involving both spouses in financial processes, and learning about financial management are critical ways to ensure you stay informed and protected. By implementing these tips and techniques, you can safeguard your finances and build a healthy and trustworthy relationship with your spouse.

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