One in four Czechs borrow behind their partner’s back

Taking out a loan or arranging a credit card or overdraft without informing your partner is OK for a quarter of Czechs. On the other hand, three-fifths of people look for a joint solution if one of their partners has debts in their marriage.

According to a survey conducted by Ipsos for Provident Financial, people approach joint money management in Czech families differently. Most often, almost half of the respondents said spouses have separate accounts, but they are more or less aware of how their partner handles money.

A quarter of partners or spouses have a joint bank account, and one in ten favor a combination of personal and collective statements from which everyday payments are made. Less than a fifth have no overview of their partner’s finances.

Marital debts are joint

In three out of four marriages, people discuss whether to take out a loan, arrange a credit card, or perhaps an authorized overdraft. In contrast, a quarter of Czechs are no longer open with their partner this way and do not need to inform them before planned financial commitments.

“People should remember that most debts incurred during the marriage become part of the marital property. In most cases, therefore, both spouses are liable for these debts. Therefore, it is ethical and legally binding to inform your spouse about your intention to incur debt in advance,” warned Lubomír Brůha from Provident.

But the survey also showed that partners could support each other if one gets into debt problems. Three-fifths of the respondents mentioned that they would deal with the situation together if their partner’s debts unexpectedly entered the marriage. Only eight out of a hundred respondents would let their life partner sort it out independently, and two out of a hundred would file for divorce.

Arguments over money

According to the survey, more than seven percent of marriages are negatively affected by financial distress. In comparison, another 22 percent of couples do not lose money, but even for them, the lack of funds sometimes causes arguments.

“The current economic challenges are raising concerns even among stable-income families. For marriages already struggling with their family budgets before inflation and rising prices, dealing with future expenses on an even thinner family budget can be a huge stressor,” warned Kateřina Brikciová, a psychologist at Dirivitu.

Unnecessary, ill-considered purchases of clothes, electronics, or cosmetics trigger family conflicts in more than a quarter of households.

Similarly, in 13 percent of households, the costs of visits to restaurants, pubs, bars, or travel and holidays are the reasons for arguments. One in nine homes argues over utility arrears.