The equitable division of marital assets during the divorce process is supposed to foster fairness. That’s why assets aren’t necessarily divided equally. While this gives you room to argue for your fair share of the marital estate, you may end up feeling cheated if you later discover that your spouse was hiding assets form you. That’s why you need to be proactive in finding these hidden assets early on and looping them into the property division process.
Why do spouses hide assets?
Quite simply so that they can keep them for themselves. If assets can be hidden away from the divorce process, then they won’t be divided, meaning that the spouse who hid them can keep them for himself or herself post-divorce. This is wrong and flies in the face of the law.
How are assets hidden?
There are a lot of ways to hide assets. Some spouses open up new bank accounts and filter marital funds into it, while other remove items of personal property from the state or retitle assets in the name of another individual. Some spouses falsely claim extensive business losses while others stash away cash.
How can you find hidden assets?
You might have a number of options. One route is to work with a forensic accountant who can help you spot red flags. Another is to simply look out for signs that your spouse is hiding assets, which you may be able to find in:
- Bank statements
- Loan applications
- Tax returns
- Credit card statements
- Business records
- Public records
- Email correspondences
Then, you can follow up with your attorney to determine your next steps if you’ve identified any of these red flags.
Consider letting an attorney help you with your case
Your financial future is at stake. With that in mind, don’t leave your property division to chance. Instead, be diligent in assessing the marital estate and ensuring that all assets are included in the property division process. If you’d like some help in doing that, then rest assured that skilled law firms like ours are here to help.