What if I suspect my spouse is hiding assets?

When it comes to divorce in Knoxville, most couples are aware the law requires them to share the marital assets. If they do not have children and can agree to split things fairly, they may end their marriage by filing a marital dissolution agreement. However, high asset divorces and ones involving children are usually not so easy to settle and come with their own set of unique challenges. 

If you suspect your spouse is not completely honest and transparent about his or her financial information and assets, you need to act fast. Your partner might be transferring and hiding assets to keep you from receiving your fair share in the settlement. Here are some common ways spouses hide assets: 

  • Making recent purchases of high-end and expensive items: Your spouse might make extravagant purchases and return them after the divorce is final. 
  • Being dishonest on taxes: Your partner might overpay the IRS so he or she can receive the money back after the divorce is final. Your spouse might also resort to underreporting income. 
  • Creating accounts for the children: There is nothing wrong with setting up accounts to ensure your kids’ financial security. However, your partner’s goal may be to hide cash in those accounts until the divorce is final. 

Hiding assets is illegal. The act carries legal penalties and can have a significant impact on your divorce settlement. Two outcomes are likely.

  • Scenario one: Your spouse lies to the courts about his or her assets, and you receive an unfavorable settlement.
  • Scenario two: Your spouse intentionally misrepresents finances and assets, you find out and the courts get involved in finding them. You end up with your share of marital assets.

Besides hiring a forensic accountant and working with a financial professional to protect your financial interests in a high-value divorce, you can ask the courts to intervene. The courts use the discovery process to force uncooperative spouses to legally comply if there are suspicions of hidden assets.