Blogs

Spouse Hiding Assets During Divorce
  • Derek J. Byrne
  • December 27th, 2023

Is Your Spouse Hiding Assets During Divorce? Here’s What Should You Do

Divorce can be a stressful and complicated process, especially when it comes to dividing your marital assets. You and your spouse are required by law to disclose all of your assets and debts so that they can be fairly and equitably distributed. However, some spouses may try to hide or undervalue some of their assets, in order to get a larger share of the marital property or to avoid paying alimony or child support. This is not only unethical, but also illegal, and it can have serious consequences for both parties.

 

If you suspect that your spouse is hiding assets during your divorce, you should not ignore or overlook this issue. You have the right to know the full extent of your marital estate, and to receive your fair share of it. You can also hire Derek J. Byrne if you are looking for the best divorce attorney in St Petersburg.

 

In this blog, we will dig into some steps you should take to uncover and recover any hidden assets in your divorce.

 

What Should You Do If Your Spouse is Hiding Assets During Divorce?

 

  1. Look for the red flags

 

The first step to finding hidden assets is to look for the red flags that may indicate that your spouse is hiding something. Some of the common signs that your spouse may be hiding assets include:

 

  • Changing their spending habits, such as making large or frequent withdrawals, purchases, or transfers, or opening new accounts or credit cards.

 

  • Being secretive or defensive about their finances, such as refusing to share financial information, passwords, or statements, or lying about their income, expenses, or assets.

 

  • A sudden decrease in their income, like claiming a pay cut, a demotion, or a loss of a bonus or commission, or deferring income or payments until after the divorce.

 

  • A sudden increase in their expenses, like paying off non-existent debts, making gifts or loans to friends or relatives, or supporting a new partner or lifestyle.

 

  • Having a complex or unusual financial situation, like owning or operating a business, having offshore or foreign accounts, or having multiple or hidden sources of income.

 

  1. Gather and review the financial documents

 

The second step to finding hidden assets is to gather and review the financial documents that may reveal or hint at the existence or value of the assets. Some of the financial documents that you should obtain and examine include:

 

  • Tax returns can show the income, deductions, and credits of your spouse, as well as any interest, dividends, capital gains, or losses from investments or businesses.

 

  • Bank statements can show the deposits, withdrawals, transfers, and balances of your spouse, as well as any unexplained transactions or activity.

 

  • Credit card statements can show the purchases, payments, and debts of your spouse, as well as any cash advances, fees, or rewards.

 

  • Investment statements can show the assets, liabilities, and performance of your spouse’s stocks, bonds, mutual funds, retirement accounts, or other securities.

 

  • Property records can show the ownership, value, and equity of your spouse’s real estate, vehicles, jewelry, art, or other tangible assets.

 

Hiring a divorce attorney in St Pete can also help you collect relevant documents that can be presented as evidence in the court.

 

  1. Hire a professional

 

The third step to finding hidden assets is to hire a professional who can help you with the investigation and valuation of the assets. Some of the professionals that you may need to hire include:

 

  • A divorce attorney in St Petersburg, who can advise you on your legal rights and options, and represent you in the divorce proceedings. We can also help you obtain the financial documents and information from your spouse, through formal discovery methods, such as requests for production, interrogatories, or depositions.

 

  • A forensic accountant can analyze the financial documents and data, and trace and track the hidden assets.

 

  • A private investigator, who can conduct background checks, surveillance, and interviews, and uncover any evidence or clues of hidden assets.

 

  1. Take legal action

 

The fourth and final step to finding hidden assets is to take legal action to recover and protect the assets. Derek J. Byrne is the best divorce and family lawyer in Tierra Verde who can help you with your child custody case. Some of the legal actions that you may need to take include:

 

  • Filing a motion for temporary orders, can prevent your spouse from selling, transferring, or hiding any assets during the divorce process, and require them to disclose and produce any financial information or documents.

 

  • Filing a motion for contempt, can penalize your spouse for violating any court orders or discovery obligations, and compel them to comply or face sanctions, such as fines, fees, or jail time.

 

  • Filing a motion for an asset freeze, which can restrict your spouse from accessing or using any assets that are suspected or proven to be hidden, and preserve them for the final distribution.

 

  • Filing a motion for an asset recovery, which can order your spouse to return or reimburse any assets that are confirmed to be hidden, and award you a larger share of the marital property or a higher amount of alimony or child support.

 

Trust Derek J. Byrne For All Your Legal Matters

 

Hidden assets can be a serious and common problem in divorce. Derek J. Byrne is the most trusted divorce and family lawyer in Tierra Verde. I can guide you through the necessary steps to uncover and recover any hidden assets and get your fair share of the marital property. Visit my website today to learn more about me or book an appointment to discuss your legal matter with me.

Contact Derek today About Your Case