My Spouse is Hiding Assets - How Can I Protect Myself in a Divorce?
When a person knows there marriage is coming to an end sometimes a spouse will hide assets to either have a windfall of money after the divorce case or to simply hurt the other spouse. Hiding assets can include:
- Hording cash
- Secret bank accounts
- Opening safe deposit boxes
- "Loaning" money to family or friends
- Paying off fake debts
- Delaying a company bonus and/or avoiding any pay raises or promotions
- Selling off marital assets.
Early in the divorce process it is important to identify if any assets are disappearing or if there is anything unusual financially. This can be especially difficult for the spouse that does not have regular information about the marital financials. It is even more difficult when a spouse starts hiding assets years in advance in anticipation of a divorce.
The best method to protect yourself from a spouse that is hiding assets is to immediately hire a divorce attorney. At our law office we are pro-active in determining what needs to be done for our client's specific circumstances. Our goal is to make sure our clients are protected and their financial futures are protected.
Some of the first steps we can take to protect a client from a spouse that is hiding assets are:
- Obtain a Court Order to prevent the sale of assets or the transfer of money
- Serve subpoenas to employers, banks, brokerage houses and any other financial organization
- Serve a subpoena on the post office to determine if a spouse has re-directed their mail
- Direct our clients to review all mail delivered to the home
- Demand depositions of family or friends who may be assisting a spouse to hide assets.
One of the easiest ways to determine if a spouse is lying to the Court is to perform a simple accounting of their claimed expenses and income. If a spouse claims expenses that exceed their income but they just managed to buy a new car or take an expensive vacation that is a red flag that assets are being hidden or misdirected.
On occasion our office will recommend that a professional should be hired such as a forensic accountant or a private investigator to help obtain evidence of this fraud.
Our divorce attorneys at Proto, Sachs & Brown, LLP have decades of experience litigating divorce cases in Westchester County, New York and the surrounding counties. We immediately establish a legal strategy that will protect your rights.
When addressing the financial issues of a divorce action we are keenly aware of the tactics of other divorce litigants and other divorce attorneys. Some of the issues we have encountered include:
- Spouse business owner intentionally allowing business to fail to avoid alimony
- Spouse delaying six figure bonus to avoid equitable distribution during divorce
- Husband claiming poverty but took "secret" vacation to Europe with girlfriend
- Wife established individual bank account without knowledge of Husband in the United States and three accounts in South America
- Husband transferred foreign real property to brother's name to avoid equitable distribution
- Spouse skimming money off the top of a business and keeping cash
- Husband making purchases for girlfriend, claiming purchases were a loans
- Spouse purchasing large amounts of money orders and bank checks
- Wife selling assets at a steep discount to waste the assets of the marriage
- Husband transferring large sums of money to children to be held in "trust"
In order to be successful in a New York divorce action it is necessary for your attorney to be prepared, have knowledge of New York State divorce laws and be able to anticipate these tactics and legal strategies.
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Our divorce and family law lawyers practice in Westchester and the surrounding counties. Our main office is in downtown White Plains, New York.
If you or a loved one is involved in a divorce action or is suspicious that a spouse is hiding assets call our divorce attorneys today (914) 946-4808 or contact us by e-mail. The sooner we can get involved the more effective our strategies will be to protect you and your financial future.
You have rights in a divorce and you should not be taken advantage of under any circumstances.