Full disclosure is required during divorce. Your spouse cannot hide assets. He or she must honestly tell the court about all assets that the family controls so that they can be divided fairly.
That doesn’t stop people from trying, however. It’s a very common issue, especially with high asset divorce cases where the financial picture can be very complicated.
Now, you may assume this isn’t a problem for you. Wouldn’t you notice if an asset disappeared and your spouse claimed you never owned it?
That’s how people are often caught. One spouse notices that the retirement fund went from $3 million to $250,000 and starts digging into the transactions to see where that money went.
The real problem comes when the other spouse didn’t know that the asset was there in the first place. This can happen when he or she trusts the other person without question.
For instance, your spouse may tell you that he or she earns $500,000 per year. However, that does not take into account a $100,000 yearly bonus. It also doesn’t account for a $50,000 raise that he or she got 10 years ago. Your spouse has been stashing this money away for years and has millions that you know nothing about. You won’t notice the inaccurate report because you never knew that money was coming in.
This is why it’s so important to understand your financial picture completely. Looking at pay stubs, tax returns and online bank statements can help. Make sure you know all of your legal options to dig up those hidden assets.
Source: Huffington Post, “Be Smarter: 8 Ways Your Spouse Can Hide Assets Before A Divorce,” Roxana Maddahi, accessed March 09, 2018