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How do people hide assets before or while divorcing?

On Behalf of | Oct 12, 2023 | Divorce |

You likely know already that you shouldn’t hide assets during a divorce. It could constitute fraud. If the court discovers that you’ve hidden assets and lied about what you own, it’s not going to help your position at all. You are supposed to make full disclosure to the court, and then you and your ex can divide your assets in accordance with the law.

That being said, you may also be aware that people do try to hide assets. If you’re worried that your spouse is doing this, it’s important to know what tactics they may use so that you can discover this misconduct before your property division agreement is finalized. These are a few examples of tactics people may utilize when hiding martial assets.

Putting money aside

In some cases, people will use the very simple tactic of taking cash back when they make a purchase and then storing that cash in a safe deposit box. They’re just putting money aside slowly, hoping that their spouse won’t notice so that that entire fund can be hidden when they get divorced.

Overpaying debts

A plan that is a bit more complex involves overpaying taxes or credit card bills. When this is done, it will typically generate a refund check. But that can take weeks or months to happen, so the person hopes to get their refund after the divorce has been finalized.

Giving money to a friend

Finally, one of the most common tactics of all is when people simply give money away. Maybe they claim that they were giving a friend money for an old debt they’d forgotten about. Or maybe they gave money to a sibling or another family member as a “gift.” What’s really happening is that they have an agreement with that person to give the money back after the divorce.

Again, all of these tactics to hide assets are prohibited. As you go through a divorce, make sure that you know exactly what legal steps to take if you suspect that your spouse is hiding assets. Seeking legal guidance proactively can be very helpful in this regard.