When you file for divorce, you and your spouse are required to disclose all of your property and assets. This marital property is then divided in a way that the judge presiding over the case deems fair and equitable. There are some instances, however, where one spouse attempts to hide some of the property or assets so that it does not have to be divided and can remain in the sole possession of one person. This type of asset hiding occurs more often than you may think. It is crucial that you understand how to keep an eye out for these types of behaviors, so you can ensure you receive everything that you are entitled to in the divorce settlement.
First, ask questions regarding your spouse’s financial accounts. Does your spouse have separate accounts? Does he or she maintain control of the family bank account and have sole possession of the passwords? This is information that must be provided to the court during the divorce. The court will then evaluate all accounts for marital assets and divide the findings appropriately.
You may want to look into whether your spouse is engaging in the following behaviors:
- Deletes financial programs, such as Quickbooks.
- Tries to get signatures on documents in a pushy way.
- Acts entitled.
- Makes expensive purchases of art or antiques.
- Starts getting into debt.
Spouses who are hiding money may make large purchases, hide the items away and then resell them once the divorce is finalized. He or she may overstate debts, report higher expenses and/or report lower revenue than is actually gathered.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.