When you go through a divorce, one thing that you have to do is disclose all of your assets. If you’re unsure of the assets you possess, then you need to go through them one by one. Some people go as far as to hire a forensic accountant for this purpose, so they’re sure that they fully disclosed their assets.
Property division is a major part of a divorce. You need to know what property you have to divide it fairly. Accidentally missing one or two small assets isn’t likely to result in serious concerns. However, a spouse may expose oneself to legal liability if a judge discovers that they intentionally hid or misrepresented their assets to the court. Hiding assets is illegal, and doing so can result in serious consequences.
What does it mean to hide assets?
In the eyes of the court, hiding assets can include any action that:
- Overstates your debts
- Understates your income or the value of property
- Overstates your expenses
- Hides property or income
Those who hide assets are usually hoping that they will be able to keep more marital assets for themselves, but this is a bad strategy. By hiding assets, they’re putting themselves in a position where the court can take action if they discover those assets.
What should you do if you think your spouse is hiding assets?
If you think that your spouse is hiding assets, the best thing you can do is talk to your attorney about your worries. They may be able to help you look for proof of those assets, such as through social media or receipts, or suggest that you work with a forensic accountant to identify them. Your lawyer can also advise you of other possible actions to take.