If your relationship is breaking down, there is a possibility that your spouse is taking steps to hide assets from you in order to prevent you from getting your fair share in the divorce that follows. You may believe that few spouses do this. However, according to a survey by the National Endowment for Financial Education, three-fifths of respondents admitted to hiding cash from their spouses. As a result, it is important to consider investigating further if your spouse exhibits one of the following signs before or during the divorce process:
1. Changes to the family business. You should particularly be suspicious if there have been any significant changes to your spouse's business (or in its income or expenses) lately. For example, if your business recently added new employees, your spouse may be hiding money by creating fake employees.
2. You are being kept in the dark financially. Your spouse may be hiding assets if you suddenly stop receiving financial statements in the mail or he or she becomes reluctant to discuss finances with you. Suspicious behavior may also include a switch to keeping financial information in locked drawers or on computers where you do not have the password.
3. Unexplained loans. Has your spouse recently loaned money to family or friends? If so, he or she may be attempting to conceal assets by temporarily lending them to someone else.
4. Odd behavior. When people commit crimes or conceal information, they often behave differently. Does your spouse become defensive or tight-lipped when discussing finances? Have new bank accounts been opened or expensive items (i.e. cars, jewelry, art, etc.) been purchased without reason? Has he or she suddenly become controlling over all aspects of your financial life? If so, it may be a sign that something is up.
Suspect something? Speak to an attorney
Although it is relatively easy to hide assets, as our world becomes more connected, it is becoming much harder to get away with it. If you have reason to believe that your spouse is not being truthful with you about finances, contact the experienced family law attorneys at LaRocca Hornik Rosen Greenberg & Patti LLC. Our attorneys can work with forensic accountants and other experts to expose any deception and ensure that you receive a fair settlement in your divorce.