Divorce is one of the most challenging life events for most couples. While you may expect some financial turmoil, you should not have to expect that your spouse may attempt to hide assets to gain a more favorable financial outcome.
If you can identify the behavior, however, you can ensure that you receive a fair division of assets.
About 43% of couples share a bank account. If you share with your spouse, watch for strange transactions on your statements. Sudden changes to your spouse’s spending habits or transactions can indicate that your spouse wants to divert assets from you. Those who wish to hide assets want to remain secretive, so he or she may open a bank account without telling you or make large withdrawals without an explanation.
Do you suspect your spouse undervalued the assets to diminish the marital estate? Do your due diligence when your spouse values businesses, valuable possessions or real estate. If you feel he or she consistently undervalues, you may want to hire a professional appraiser to receive accurate assessments.
Transfers to close friends and family
If your spouse wants to hide assets, he or she may gift assets to family and friends to keep the assets within the sphere of trust. Often, the spouse will retrieve the assets after the divorce. Look for transfers and report them quickly.
During a divorce, you should remain financially transparent. Transparency can foster trust between people, particularly during a stressful time like a divorce. If you have the willingness to stay transparent, your spouse may do the same. If not, he or she may want to hide the assets instead.