One of the most contentious issues during divorce proceedings is often the division of assets. In some cases, one party may attempt to conceal or hide assets to gain an unfair advantage.
It is important to be vigilant and look for signs that your ex-spouse might be attempting to hide assets.
Inconsistent financial disclosures
An initial red flag might be inconsistent financial disclosures by your ex-spouse. If you notice that their financial statements, tax returns or other documents do not align with their usual financial situation, this inconsistency could indicate hidden assets.
Review financial documents carefully for unexplained discrepancies. Look for changes in income, expenses or financial transactions that lack a reasonable explanation. Hidden assets might be the cause of these unexplained gaps.
Sudden transfers or large expenses
Be wary of sudden and unexplained transfers of assets or large expenses. Your ex-spouse might be attempting to move assets to offshore accounts, friends or family members to keep them out of the divorce settlement.
Suspicious business transactions
If your ex-spouse owns a business, closely examine their business transactions. Watch for unusual or questionable activities, such as overpaying vendors, understating profits or funneling money into secret accounts.
Hidden bank accounts
One common tactic is to open hidden bank accounts under a different name or using a family member’s name. If you suspect this, consider hiring a forensic accountant to help trace these accounts.
Concealing valuables or assets
Keep an eye out for any valuable assets, such as artwork, jewelry or collectibles, that suddenly go missing. Your ex-spouse might try to conceal these items or transfer their ownership to someone else temporarily.
Unusual spending habits
Chicago has 124,000 millionaires. Your ex may already have extravagant spending habits, but if they become even more lavish, beware. It may be a tactic to reduce the value of their assets and make it appear as if there is less to divide in the divorce settlement.
Going through a divorce is never easy, but being aware of potential signs that your ex-spouse is hiding assets can ensure a fair and equitable division of property.