If you by chance see lines like the following in your code:
private transient final Type field;
then know, you're in the trouble!
The reason is simple, really (provided you're sane and don't put field modifiers without reason). transient assumes that your class is serializable, and you have a particular field that you don't want to serialize. final states that the field is initialized in the constructor, and does not change the value for the rest life cycle.
This way if you will serialize an instance of class with such a field, and then deserialize it back, you will have the field initialized with null, and no way to have another value there.
P.S. That's what we have found in our code recently:
private transient final Lock sync = new ReentrantLock();
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