Divorce can bring out the worst in people. Reasonable, levelheaded folk may revert to shady tactics to “win” the process. The fear of losing assets leads many people to conceal them during proceedings.
But most attempts at hiding money prove unfruitful. Read the news and you’ll find countless cases of wily spouses footing the bill for their conniving actions. While they may have an initial financial advantage, their actions often come back to haunt them.
If you suspect your spouse is hiding money, you can take these steps to protect your finances.
Know your property rights
Usually, each spouse receives a fair share of marital property. One exception to this rule is if one spouse abuses the property during marriage, separation or the divorce proceedings. If they hide property, especially in the case of money, you may be entitled to a greater portion of the assets.
Know where money hides
Sneaky spouses may engage in all sorts of subterfuge to shield their assets. These tactics include transferring property to third parties or falsifying debts. Filing an involuntary disclosure will force your spouse to reveal these assets. They may experience financial and legal penalties for failing to do so.
Know what’s provable
Fighting your spouse about certain assets may not be worth the time and energy. By law, some foreign accounts can avoid disclosure if their total contents fall below a certain threshold. Other assets, like individual bank accounts, are detectable with minimal sleuthing.
Receiving less than your fair share in a divorce hurts your financial prospects in the long run. But by knowing your rights, you can emerge from the process without taking a major hit. If you suspect your spouse is concealing assets, working with a family law professional can help you get the settlement you deserve.