What is “dissipation of marital assets?” Dissipation of marital assets is “where one spouse uses marital funds for his or her own benefit and for a purpose unrelated to the marriage at a time when the marriage is undergoing an irreconciliable breakdown.” Rabbath v. Farid, 4 So. 3d 778, 780. For instance, dissipation occurs where a spouse spends money on travel expenses or jewelry for a girlfriend or boyfriend while committing adultery, or where a spouse gambles away money without the knowledge or consent of the other spouse.
While Florida is a “no fault state” in that the court usually does not concern itself with whose fault the divorce is (the court just needs to find that the marriage has been “irretrievably broken” in order to grant the divorce”), the court can take into consideration dissipation of marital assets when distributing marital debts and assets during a divorce. “Evidence of a spouse’s dissipation of assets is a proper consideration for the trial court in devising an equitable distribution.”