During divorce, many people are tempted to hide their assets so they can end up better off financially than their spouse. They may do this out of spite, or they might just be worried they will not get much money after the marriage ends. Either way, it’s not okay to hide assets, and a forensic accountant will usually find out about this unscrupulous move anyway. You should be familiar with some signs that your spouse plans to hide assets during your divorce so you can alert your New York divorce lawyer.
1. Your spouse underreports income to the IRS. In most cases, tax returns and other official forms are used to analyze finances and divide up assets. It can be hard for you to prove how much money you have with your spouse when he or she does not report it. Your spouse likely knows this, so if you notice this, you can assume he or she plans to keep the unreported income.
2. Your spouse pays more than what he or she owes on bills. In most cases, he or she will get a refund, but if this move is carefully calculated, the refund will not come until the divorce is over and lawyers are no longer keeping an eye on assets. Similarly, your spouse may not try to get any raises or promotions at work until the divorce is over, since he or she does not want to share the money with you.
3.Some people hide cash in the house, while others invest in items you might not even know about. Hiding cash may be a literal form of hiding assets, but some spouses are even sneakier and decide to purchase expensive items that you will not notice. For example, purchasing jewelry, antiques, or collector’s items that are small can be an easy way of hiding assets. Most of these are small enough that you will not even take a second look, especially if your spouse hides them in a lockbox. Some people do this so they can sell these expensive items after the divorce, while others just do it to make sure you do not get the money they think should be theirs alone.
4. Using friends and family members to help hide assets is a common scheme. Your spouse might transfer ownership of a car, account, or stock to a loved one. After the divorce, he or she will simply have it transferred back, keeping you from getting your share. Putting money into the bank account of new significant other is another tactic since you will not have access to that money. Some people even create fake debt with the help of a loved one, increasing the amount of money they get to keep in order to pay their bills.
If you suspect your spouse is using any of these tactics to hide assets, you should come to Brian D. Perskin & Associates P.C. We can use forensic accounting professionals to identify clues that your spouse is hiding assets. This may allow us to recover any missing assets, ensuring you get the money you deserve after divorce.