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Methods your spouse may use to conceal property

If you believe your marriage is nearing its end, the trust between you and your spouse may have already dissipated. Maybe you believe your partner has been unfaithful, or maybe you have other reasons to believe he or she is not being entirely truthful with you.

Sometimes, once marriages start circling the drain, spouses try to place themselves in comfortable financial positions because they see the end in sight. The methods they may use to do so are not always ethical, however, and this may mean you ultimately lose come divorce proceedings. Your best bet at fair and equitable asset division comes when you and your attorney have the full financial picture, so if you suspect your spouse might be hiding assets from you, know that he or she may:

Enlist the help of friends, family members or colleagues

If your spouse suddenly decides to sell off a boat, car, piece of art or what have you to a close friend or family member, he or she may be hiding assets. Your husband or wife may have an agreement with that person to sell back or return the assets once the divorce is final, so they do not factor in during asset division. He or she may, too, enlist the aid of a boss or supervisor, if a particularly close relationship exists between them. Your wife or husband may ask that they hold off on issuing any bonuses or raises until after divorce proceedings are complete.

Move assets around

Among the more common tactics spouses sometimes use to hide assets involves relocating funds to places you and your attorney are unlikely to find them. Often, this simply involves making withdrawals from one bank account and deposits into another, which is often located at a separate bank. Your spouse may also enlist a friend in this instance who may temporarily take on those assets – once assets are no longer under your spouse’s name, they no longer constitute marital property and therefore do not have to be shared with you.  

If you suspect your spouse is concealing assets, perform your due diligence. The stakes are high, and once your divorce goes through, you may have little recourse.

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The Law Office of Peter A. Lauzon

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