Jon raids Kate’s joint account; how to protect your accounts

Was Jon wrong to raid his and Kate's joint account?

Was Jon wrong to raid his and Kate's joint account?

The Jon and Kate saga continues with Jon allegedly pulling $230,000 from the couple’s joint account leaving Kate only $1,000.

Kate claims she has a stack of family bills that the money was supposed to cover and now she can’t pay them. (Here’s a link to an overview story. Here’s a link to Kate’s side of it. Here’s a link to Jon’s side of it.)

Is it a dirty trick or should it be expected that one spouse is going to raid the joint bank account when getting divorced?

I called Atlanta attorney Melody Richardson of Pachman Richardson, LLC, to find out if:

  1. Raiding the bank account is common in every day divorces.
  2. How you can protect yourself and your money if you are getting divorced.

Richardson, whose practice is limited to family law, says in Georgia joint accounts are NOT automatically frozen when you file for divorce so theoretically your spouse could wipe it out to zero.

However, she adds it hardly ever happens because “If one spouse leaves the other one high and dry, there will be some really negative consequences.”

Richardson says judges do not look kindly on that and it will bite you on the bottom!

There are three things you can do to help protect your joint account from raiding:

  1. When you file for divorce you can ask your bank to keep an eye on the account to look for any large withdrawals. However, that only alerts you to hanky panky after the fact and by then the damage is done.
  2. Richardson says when your lawyer files for divorce they can also get a “standing order,” which will allow you and your spouse to pay your regular bills out of the account but will not allow anything unusual to come out of the account.

So that means, “No new house, no new house for your girlfriend and no new boobs!” explains Richardson.

3. She says some women who don’t trust their spouses at all open a new account and remove half of the money from the joint account before they even file for divorce. That will protect your half, but it also tips your hubby off as to what is coming.

Richardson says women should go with their instincts if they think they may be getting divorced.

“If their spouse has already turned crazy, they need to protect themselves.”

The good news is if your account does get raided, Richardson says in Georgia, at least, the court can move pretty quickly to rectify it.

So what do you think? Did Jon play dirty raiding their joint account? Should he have to give it back?

Did you or your spouse raid your joint accounts? How did that go over? What happened after the giant withdrawal?

Did you take precautions to protect your accounts when getting divorced? What were you advised to do?

90 comments Add your comment


October 5th, 2009
9:46 pm

Once again, “women” should go with their instincts to protect themselves because God only knows that no “women” go crazy and do stuff like this. I guess this blog is for Mom’s…screw the dads; let’s make them look as bad as possible!

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

October 5th, 2009
9:48 pm

It could go either way! Women could raid their joint account too — it just didn’t happen to be that way in this situation.


October 5th, 2009
9:50 pm

Welcome to the world of equals, ladies. For some reason, I have a hard time feeling sorry her no matter what happens.

Lynette Newton

October 5th, 2009
10:08 pm

Like they said, happens all the time…be it the wife OR the husband. These two are just so public that to do this crap is crazy. And I don’t just mean raiding accounts for whatever reason, the public updates via the Today show and Larry King, etc are nuts. May they both get what they deserve..I just think it is shame the kids have such brainless parents….


October 5th, 2009
10:25 pm

Enter your comments hereI dont feel sorry for Kate at all!Shes rude aand full of her self!I feel bad for the kids though!


October 5th, 2009
10:29 pm

when a close family member of mine was separated from her husband he raided their account…the court made them figure out the monthly bills for that month and divide the he had to give her back half of the ‘extra’ income…he didnt mind..he was just afraid she would take it and spend it before the bills could be paid…he worked,, she was a sahm of 2 kids…and there wasnt nearly as much money as we are talking about with these morons j and k…im really so sick of hearing about them….it would only be wise for anyone separating to take half of the money…not all of it…no judge is gonna let something like that stand..i dotn think…who knows..people get screwed in divorces all the time…men and women…women get screwed in the settlement a lot…men get screwed in child support…then men dont pay the child support..what a mess…why does anyone want to get married these days anyway lol


October 5th, 2009
10:40 pm

In this case, according to Kate, she DID remove $100,000 that was set aside just in case Jon did something like this. She was told by the arbitrator to put it back. She says she did. Now Jon has done exactly what she was afraid of to begin with. So much for trying to protect herself and the kids. Some people have been so quick to judge her harshly when it appears she is actually the only grounded parent these kids have. Sure, she wants to keep the show going because it is what has provided a lifestyle you and I could only dream about. I dont think that wrong of her. That lifestyle is the only life those kids have ever known and despite their success, they appear happy, well behaved and, until their father started acting like an idiot, well-adjusted. Everyone has complained about the kids not having trust accounts, turns out they do, and SHE is the one who set those trusts up. Jon, by his own admission was never involved in the family financing, preferring to leave that to Kate because she was the one who was so organized. He checked out along time ago as a partner for whatever reason and left Kate to handle the day to day details for the family. Those kids have only ONE brainless parent and that is the one who has been behaving like a over-sexed teenager for at least the last 10 months and possibly longer. I dont think he even knew what the word “epiphany” was until his lawyer told him to say it as part of his new-found means of gaining “empowerment”

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October 5th, 2009
10:50 pm

Stupid lawyer, stupid comments and advice.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

October 5th, 2009
10:56 pm

I loved the lawyer — I thought she was smart and very quotable!


October 5th, 2009
11:34 pm

I’m sorry that ANY family has to melt down so spectactularly — and fairly disgusted that I have to have it shoved in my face on TV, internet and print.

I DON’T CARE. They are both classless idiots, to be airing their dirty laundry in public. Not for one moment do I believe that Kate is “penniless”. We will never know the true story of their marriage – anyone who thinks they can tell from carefully scripted and filmed 30-minutes shows is just kidding themselves.

They’ve had more than their fair share of their “15 minutes of fame” — it’s past time for them to fall back into obscurity. For a couple of high school graduates whose biggest claim to fame is being able to birth as many kidlets as a dog or a cat, they’ve done pretty well. But you gotta know when to hold ‘em, and know when to fold ‘em, and it’s definitely time to walk away. PLEASE!


October 5th, 2009
11:41 pm

I had never even heard of these people (J&K) until the AJC (and other publications) made headline news out of them. These people are WORTHLESS; why does anyone care? Who care what these idiots do; does no one have a life? As far as protecting assets in a divorce goes; well, separate bank accounts (individual savings accts.), joint checking (at least $2,000 over anticipated monthly expenses, but no more,) separate financial/stock accounts in general solves both divorce financial issues, but unexpected deaths (survivor benefits, assuming murder isn’t contemplated.) Check with your attorney BEFORE marrying! Money isn’t about love and trust, it’s simply financially prudent on the part of those contemplating marriage. Yes, I was married, loved my husband, had separate accounts, etc. He died. I have some clue about that of which I speak.


October 6th, 2009
12:18 am

It’s a sad day when we set our “barometers” to the Jon and Kate debauchery. It will be a happy day when their “story” is merely a bad memory. Enough already. This whole scenario sickens me. Greed has destroyed them. Nothing more. Nothing less.

Jerry Cannon

October 6th, 2009
3:50 am

Jerry – Jerry – Jerry – Jerry

Guess we know which show these morons will show up on next. Who knows, maybe this whole thing is just a stunt. These reality shows are nothing but dirt to begin with! But the real issue here seems to be family law. The scales are always tilted to one side or the other. Otherwise, how would crooked lawyers stay in business. If everything was equal there would be much less need for lawyers and judges. What makes me sick, is when you go to the polls there’s no one running against the judges in office. I once helped hand out flyers for “Fathers are Parents Too” in front of the Gwinnett courhouse. Talk about dirty looks and negative comments. You would have thought we were protesting gay rights in the middle of a Southern Baptist Revival.

Soldier in Afghanistan!


October 6th, 2009
6:12 am

I was left with 76 cents in the account. No automatic deposits, he would cash the check at one of those check cashing places.

The attorneys did work out a temporary settlement until the court date.

At court: He told them (in the court house) he didn’t give me the support & alimony in the temporary settlement because he was paying the bills directly. I handed the UNOPENED bills to his attorney in the court room lobby. ALL were quite delinquent. His attorney walked him off someplace (my attorney said he was probably cussing him out) and when they came back they signed the divorce decree with only one clause struck.

Neither attorney understood why he wanted the clause struck. It was the one to provide (not the full amount) for the college education. He said he did not know what relationship he would have with his children at that point and refused to be forced into paying that. In GA if it is not in the divorce decree, the parent does NOT have to pay on college, and CANNOT be taken back to court to get funds for that. My attorney pulled me aside and said, what does he mean? I told him: He just told you how he feels about being a parent and who he is as person. It was THE most meaningful insight to him I EVER had.

Most of the lifers on the board know what has happened in the last several years since then.

My heart goes out to all going through divorce. It is a business transaction fraught with emotion. I would advise Kate to stand her ground, and stop playing victim out to the public. Her efforts should be where they always were supposed to be…parenting the 8 kids she birthed. She needs to get off the tweets, the talk shows etc and go figure out how to live the rest of her life modeling behavior that will teach those kids. Or perhaps she would like her sons to grow up to think of women as people who can be walked on, and her daughters to think they can claim ‘victim’ like Kate does, when things go wrong.

Kate–I suggest you listen to Reba’s “I’m a Survivor” because right now, your not!

Title: Reba McEntire – I’m A Survivor lyrics

I guess I’ll keep on livin’
Even if this love’s to die for
‘Cause your bags are packed and I ain’t cryin’
You’re walkin’ out and I’m not trying
To change your mind ’cause I was born to be

The baby girl without a chance
A victim of circumstance
The one who oughta give up, but she’s just
Too hard headed
A single mom who works two jobs
Who loves her kids and never stops
With gentle hands and the heart of a fighter
I’m a survivor

I don’t believe in self-pity
It only brings you down
May be the queen of broken hearts
But I don’t hide behind the crown
When the deck is stacked against me
I just play a different game
My roots are planted in the past
And though my life is changin’ fast
Who I am is who I wanna be

A single mom who works two jobs
Who loves her kids and never stops
With gentle hands and the heart of a fighter
I’m a survivor

Guess Who

October 6th, 2009
6:52 am

Since Jon is denying raiding the account, this is a case of he said/she said. After watching the show for several years, I am incline to believe Jon. I know that isn’t popular, but I don’t care.


October 6th, 2009
7:15 am

@ kate ( from j and k plus 8) IMHO…never liked the show…ever….

IMHO…if you wanted to ride it to the top, then you’d better be ready to ride it to the bottom.

When much is given….much is required….

I’ll stay in my own little corner with my own little sack of problems thank you….

Enough already

October 6th, 2009
7:25 am

I rate these people up there with the most annoying of the world; at this point they should both grow up and stop airiing their dirty laundry for all the world to see. They claim to be looking out for the wellbeing of their kids, so for the sake of the little ones shouldn’t they suck it up, act like rational adults and keep the details of the seperation & divorce private??


October 6th, 2009
7:37 am

I think Jon and Kate should settle their dispute in THUNDERDOME!!!!!


October 6th, 2009
7:40 am

There is an easy solution to this you stupid, stupid people…..DON’T HAVE A JOINT BANK ACCOUNT!!!!!


October 6th, 2009
7:41 am

That’s actually a very good idea Vork.


October 6th, 2009
7:42 am

Thank you Clara, it appears at least one of you silly women on this blog has a brain.


October 6th, 2009
7:44 am

I think Jon is a cutie.


October 6th, 2009
7:45 am

I think Kate’s hair makes her look like she belongs in the 80’s band, “Flock of Seagulls.”


October 6th, 2009
7:47 am

All I know is that Jon and Kate are some of the most screwed up people on the planet. I thought my parents were bad….not anymore.

Captain Hammer

October 6th, 2009
7:51 am

Theresa I think you just got threadjacked by, “The Guild.”


October 6th, 2009
7:53 am

I don’t give a rat’s butt what these two morons do. It’s none of my business, and I certainly don’t waste time worrying about crap like this.


October 6th, 2009
8:21 am

My parents divorced when I was in high school. My father was the attentive parent of the two. When my mother left, she took a large sum of money from my father’s savings account. Her name wasn’t even on the account. But it was with the same bank where they had their joint checking account, and the bank allowed it. He was furious. I’m not entirely sure what ever happened to that money–I think it was deducted from the lump-sum payment he had to make to her (she’d always been a SAHM, and he had to split their savings with her) when the divorce was finalized.

To Jerry’s point above, regarding the “fathers are parents too” group. I think it’s a shame. When my father went to court for the custody hearing, the judge looked at him like “Why’s the dad here? Where’s the mom?” Well, Mom didn’t show up. Yet, still there was a waiting period after the hearing before he was awarded custoday. But he was the only father there actively seeking to gain 100% custody of his children. The other hearings he had to sit through, were cases where dads were on the defensive or were only seeking custody to get back at Mom. It’s a shame. This was in Gwinnett Co in the mid-90s.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

October 6th, 2009
8:23 am

Yeah but JJ this is happening to real families not just TV families. One of our friends caught her husband cheating and had the forethought to have the standing order when she filed for divorce — her husband thought she was too stupid to protect himself and was in the process of buying himself a nice big old house while leaving his kids with nothing for the bills. Because this mom got good legal advice, he was stopped and the mom had money to take care of the kids until they got an official decree in court. This does happen outside of bizarro TV land and women (and men) need to know if my relationship does go sour this is how they can protect themselves and their kids.


October 6th, 2009
8:49 am

This happened to my sister years ago..She was left with 3 minor children and the husband never paid a dime of child support..Anytime that she took him back to court, he always told the jusde that he just couldn’t afford to pay child support and still be able to live..All of this while he and his new wife were living in a brand new house that they had built and both of them were driving new vehicles..

As for J&K, I’ve always thought that he was the jerk..Yes, I know that TV potrayed her as a royal biatch, but when you have that many kids, you have to have some kind of schedule or routine..Trust me I know, I come from a family of 10..Any time that I ever watched the show, he was always the parent that was goofing off, not helping Kate with the kids, fussing about having to do something around the house to help out..

As for Kate going on talk shows and traveling around for her book..Lots of people do that everyday..She still (appears to) spend a lot of qaulity time with her children..They all seem to be happy and healthy..

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

October 6th, 2009
8:52 am

my comment should have said too stupid to protect herself — sorry –


October 6th, 2009
9:30 am

This is sad to me, not just for Jon and Kate (because I don’t care about their foolishness) but for everyone who suffers thru this. It’s wrong and it would make me truly question who it is that I married if he showed himself capable of something like this.

This didn’t happen when my parents divorced either time (yes, married and divorced twice!) but my mother is looking forward to getting some of my father’s retirement. I think it is crazy that she is getting some of his when he retires but she is sitting pretty with all of hers now that she is retired. WTH is that about? Now, I love my mother and father very much but I think my mother is wrong for this. Oh, and she’s remarried to a man who gets 80% of his salary from the FBI since he’s retired and is not spending a dime of her money. I say all that to say, it seems that people get screwed through divorce decrees in probably the same amount or more situations where one of the spouses raids the accounts.

I agree with having separate accounts and joint accounts for family bills. My aunt and uncle do that. Each has his/her own account for “allowance” and the other money is family money. I don’t know if that protects them from the other if they divorce and it gets crazy but at least, if they are smart with their “allowance” money, they won’t be stuck with 13 cents at the end.

Jesse's Girl

October 6th, 2009
10:05 am

I like Zaboo’s idea! I don’t give a rat’s patooty about these 2 yahoos. In real life….if you see things going down hill in your marriage….do something about it BEFORE the bank acct gets raided.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

October 6th, 2009
10:13 am

JG’s gonna raid her own account — heheehe

New Stepmom

October 6th, 2009
11:44 am

I happened to be at home yesterday morning and saw Kate on Today. I feel sorry for her even thought I think she and Jon need to stay off camera. I thought for a long time she was awful, but I think they had all of these kids and he was so immature that she had to become a drill sergeant just to get everything done. I think he has always been what we see now and she was doing everything to save her marriage and raise her kids. I think them playing their divorce out in the media is unfortunate and from personal experience with my step child, their kids will suffer for it. They will one day question their existence and how they came to be since their parents visibly despise each other.

I think because men in the past have often treated women so poorly in divorces the pendulum has swung to some extent and a lot of good men who strive to do the right thing by their kids and exes are getting unfair custody and support agreements because of the jacka$$e$ that did not pay child support and never showed up for visitation. All parties need to protect themselves and the finances, but it is not just the women getting raw deals anymore. Our child support payments are currently more per month than what I made when I first graduated from college-for one 10yo. All that sum of money has to pay for is food and clothing since all of her other expenses are covered separately by us. Her mom refuses to work. In the end the biggest loser is the child and it stinks for her. I fear that she will eventually distance herself from all of us because she is caught in the middle of so much and it is not her fault and in some ways it is not either parent’s fault. Divorce stinks for children and those 8 kids in PA are going to suffer to some extent for the rest of their lives because neither parent can get it together enough to resolve their issues in private.


October 6th, 2009
12:46 pm

Theresa, how do we get ideas to you about topics?


October 6th, 2009
1:23 pm

Enter your comments here

I find it odd that this woman claims she cannot pay her bills. They have made millions of dollars on the tv show and thru book deals. If Jon took $200,000 when did it happen? Does she not look at her accounts online? Crying poor pitiful me seems a bit staged. It truly shows how far off center these people really are from reality. I wish they would take the show off the air and go quietly into the good night.

Shananeeeeee Fananeeeeeee

October 6th, 2009
1:24 pm

Go get a little part-time job Kate, now that is reality.


October 6th, 2009
1:49 pm

I think they need to find a way to get along and that Jon needs to stop dating and start thinking about his kids. The money he took should go for his kids and should be shared between him and kate to do so. Kate is stressed come on she has eight kids who wouldnt be but she does need to relax some. Its going to be hard for her dealing with the kids and now Jon’s behavior. He needs to grow up bad they both have some growing up to do.


October 6th, 2009
1:51 pm

I am in favor of the separate accounts. That way, if something like this happens-you should have some money somewhere that you can use to support the children. What’s strange to me here is that they didn’t have more money in the account…they did make a huge amount of money over the last few years. Kate claims she was left with only like $1,000 ? MAYBE Kate does have some money squirreled away somewhere…She is not stupid! Jon seems kinda dumb, so maybe she thought he’d never try a stunt like that if they were to split up.


October 6th, 2009
2:32 pm

BH – you can email her at, or throw your suggestion out here!!!!


October 6th, 2009
2:41 pm

I agree that separate accounts are the only way to go. It made my divorce a lot easier and we weren’t fighting who’s was who’s money in the end…we knew! As for Kate, she is a smart cookie and does her best for her kids. She has become a career women out of this show and she tries to make the best of it. She know once you have stepped into the the world of entertainment…there is no going back. Kate knew that the decision she made about 5 years ago to do this show…that it would be life changing and has rolled with the punches. Jon on the other hand seems to not mind the cash and perks from it including OCC building him a custom chopper, but he doesn’t like it when the press leaks he cheated on his wife. I know people go their own ways, but wait until its done and maybe make a public announcement so people know your not hiding anything when you are in the entertainment industry. Kate is not the blame…How is she blamed when Jon has thrown their marriage down the drains!

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

October 6th, 2009
3:09 pm

I actually wanted to know how a spouse could protect themselves from getting raided when getting divorced so that’s why I did the topic. I thought it was interesting.

However, I am very open to topics from you guys! Please feel free as JJ says to email me or throw them out here!! Ideas are always welcome!!


October 6th, 2009
3:47 pm

These two are sick and the rest of the world is sick for buying into it. I will not waste any thought on these people, I will not click to read any more garbage about them, I will click past any shows on TV that feature them. This is a private family matter and if they don’t have the sense or class to keep it that way; well at least I won’t contribute by being a consumer. Theresa, I know you only used them to bring up the topic, but PLEASE no more J&K stories!!


October 6th, 2009
3:49 pm

Have we heard how Jon will attempt to support his ex-wife and 8 children? Oh wait, she made more than him, she took care of the finances, what else will he say he didn’t have control over? Seriously, he wants to be the one to receive alimony not the other way around.

Can you say Train wreck?


October 6th, 2009
4:00 pm

I think they both are wrong because first Kate took $100,000 and claimed she put it back. Now Jon has taken $230,000 and she wants it back along with his cars. Kate claims this is money she pay their bill from which I don’t buy for several reasons. If she pays bills from that account on a regular basis she should have known that he was taking large sums of money out and done something about it sooner. Secondly, Kate bills exceeds Jon because she has the many nannies and bodyguard. She’s the one who continues this lifestyle not Jon that money should come from her personal account because it benefits her not him. Thirdly, when he was home with the children while she ran the street she limited his spending while she do what she wanted. He deserve that money and should not give it back. On the other hand I believe Jon was wrong for not talking this large amount over with Kate before removing it. She did have a right to know. What funny is Kate is saying this happened over a two month period not three days ago like she wanted people to believe. Also, Kate has million from the book deal in her personal account. Isn’t he entitled to some of that. It is marriage property. I think Kate just want him to go without. If I was Jon I would not give back one dime. Let her pay for her personal bodyguard and nannies out of her own money.


October 6th, 2009
4:06 pm

Oh I forgot! I have a separate bank and accounts from my husband through the credit union in which he can not touch. I have been there and done that. If I did not prepare myself early on for my separation he would have taken me for everything I had. One of the smartest things any woman could do is put a little money aside in a separate bank account. I also decided to get a P. O. Box in the next county for personal mail, tax refunds, and etc. I only put in our joint account my part of the bill money. When he left there was nothing for him to raid.


October 6th, 2009
4:15 pm

@ Theresa…I have emailed you several ideas for columns and they are never used….LOL.
Guess my ideas stink! I am in hotels 17 nights this month so some folks do seem to like my ideas…haha! Have a great night all!

Gwinnett Parent

October 6th, 2009
4:37 pm

A former co-worker of mine had what was called an “escape plan”, a banking account unknown to the spouse and a home the spouse had no idea existed. It is important for women to have their own secret stash and be knowledgeable about investments, assets, and retirement accounts. This is especially true for SAHMs. One of the moms at my daughter’s pre-school was a Forensic Accountant, who specializes in divorce cases. That could really come in handy in a divorce situation. One of the leading causes of poverty for women is divorce. The amount of SAHMs I know that are sitting ducks is scary.


October 6th, 2009
5:10 pm

@ Gwinnett Parent…I absolutely agree with you about accounts but there are many here that REALLY poo pooed it a while back. I do not have a secret stash but my husband and I maintain our own bank accounts and split the bills. It works for us, so that is what matters.