You cannot get a fair share of the assets in your divorce if you are not aware of everything you and your spouse own. Although you are required to disclose all of your income and assets during divorce proceedings, some people still try to conceal them.
If your spouse has given you reason not to trust him or her before, there is no reason to assume they should be trusted when dividing property. Even if you trust your spouse, do not ignore red flags and be sure that all assets have been fully and properly disclosed.
There are many ways to hide assets during divorce
Your spouse may have hidden assets recently or they might have been doing it for some time. The more complex your assets, the harder it may be to locate undisclosed income or property. Here are a few places to look:
- In plain sight: Most transfers of property leave a paper trail. For example, bank statements may reveal a transfer to a new account that your spouse has never mentioned to you. Also, think about the personal property you own that you assume is not worth much money. There may be a financial reason your spouse insists on keeping a particular painting, old car, or other item.
- Friends and family: If your brother-in-law suddenly bought property that he could not afford, it could be that your spouse owns some or all of that property. Your spouse may have purchased it in your brother-in-law’s name to make it more difficult to discover and recover during the divorce process.
- Out of state: People have used offshore accounts to hide money for years. Some states’ laws allow for secret trusts. Money invested in cryptocurrency can also be hard to track down.
If you suspect your spouse is hiding assets, it is crucial to carry out a thorough investigation. Failing to do so could put you at a serious disadvantage in fairly dividing marital property as part of the divorce. The team at Beattie | Onorato Family Law Group is experienced in the detailed work needed to track down and recover such property.