Hidden assets in divorce proceedings are a lot more common than anyone cares to admit. In fact, some spouses have been known to lie about their incomes while socking away stockpiles of cash in secret — and the other spouse never finds out. However, these activities do not have to remain hidden and undetectable.
Spouses who suspect that the other party in their divorce is hiding money may want to investigate the matter further by discussing it with their family law attorney. Here are a few strategies that lawyers and forensic accountants might do to uncover hidden money in a divorce:
Scrutinize voluntary disclosures
Spouses have to disclose all assets in a divorce. Sometimes, by scrutinizing voluntary disclosures, spouses will find inaccuracies that help find hidden assets.
If you suspect that your spouse isn’t being entirely honest, don’t take “no” for an answer. Demand more information in court so you can determine what’s going on with his or her assets. Your information demands could include requests to have your questions answered in addition to requests for records relating to assets, titles liens, bank records, tax filings, trust documents and more.
Depose your ex-spouse
Depositions are special hearings in which someone must answer questions under oath. Your family law attorney will know what kinds of questions to ask in order to reveal what your ex-spouse might be lying about.
Check business records
One way that spouses may try to hide money is through a personal business. It’s not uncommon for spouses to make large expensive purchases that they claim was a business expense, when it was really a way to convert cash and earnings into something that looks like an operational or business expense, when, in fact, it was not.
If you have any reason not to trust your spouse regarding the full disclosure of assets in your divorce, make sure you look deeper into the matter. Uncovering hidden money in a divorce could be the only way that you can pursue a fair shake in your asset division process.