In most divorces, both spouses manage some level of cooperation to reach
the terms of their divorce and move on with their lives. Other times,
however, the spouses can be in heated contention with one another about
the end of their marriage. When this happens, terms of the divorce must
be fought for and some spouses may do unsavory things to try and leverage
process in their favor. A common way this is done is for one spouse, usually
the "breadwinner" spouse, to hide assets in an attempt to shield
them from the
property division process.
How to Find Hidden Assets
Just like in a criminal trial, there is a "discovery" process
in a divorce proceeding in which each spouse gives the other information
on all the marital property they have that should be considered during
the property division process. Sometimes, a spouse will know that the
other is not being forthcoming during the discovery phase. Other times
they can't be sure, but have a healthy suspicion that something is amiss.
A knowledgeable Sugar Land divorce attorney, however, can help ensure that
the discovery process is thorough as possible. Evaluating your spouse's
assets isn't just checking bank accounts—it can be a whole body of evidence made up of different documents and records.
Here's what should be asked for during discovery:
- Tax returns (1040, refunds, etc.)
- Financial statements (such as credit card statements)
- Loan applications
- Bank statements
- Other relevant documentation (sizable receipts, cancelled checks, etc.)
What if there are still missing assets?
If your spouse has turned over everything he or she says they have in accordance
with the discovery request and you still believe there to be hidden assets,
then it may be time to turn to a forensic accountant. A forensic accountant
can evaluate the financial information that has been surrendered in the
discovery process and trace the flow of cash and other assets and determine
whether or not the spouse is being as transparent as they say they are.
If you are concerned about the division of assets in your divorce, then
retaining aggressive and resourceful counsel is key. At the
Audu Law Firm, Attorney Lilian Audu understands how crucial it is that marital property
is fairly divided during a divorce. Clients that have concerns about hidden
assets can not only count on a thorough discovery process but access to
a forensic accountant who can help ensure the a proper division of assets.
Ready to start taking a proactive approach to your divorce? Our firm is
ready to hear your story.
Call us today.