One of the more complicated parts of divorce is untangling your marital property and assets. No matter how long you’ve been married, both spouses have the right to an equitable division of the assets you’ve earned and collected throughout your marriage. Of course, the perfect outcome would be a divorce settlement where everything is worked out quickly without disagreement or contention. Unfortunately, as we know, sometimes this is isn’t the case.
Some couples are able to communicate openly and amicable during a divorce. However, some are not, and determining things like child support or alimony can become contentious or acrimonious. When you’re dealing with high-asset divorce and your split is somewhat hostile, it’s important to have a clear understanding of who owns what regarding marital property – and how to spot any hidden marital assets.
How do people attempt to conceal assets in a divorce?
Sometimes, if an individual wants to prevent certain assets, property or cash from being divided in a divorce, they may attempt to hide them from the court. If you’re alert for signs your spouse is attempting to conceal assets, you can both ensure your divorce settlement is fair and equitable.
Here are some common warning signs that someone is trying to conceal assets and money from you and/or the court:
- Does your spouse always have a lot of pocket cash, but their bank account is low or their paycheck has decreased? Often, individuals trying to hide monetary assets have their employer pay them “under the table” to avoid having that money on the books, in their bank account or having to share it with their spouse and family.
- Is your spouse suddenly gifting or giving away valuable items, like artwork and jewelry? This is an easy way to hide expensive property until a divorce is finalized. Often, people will temporarily gift valuable assets to family or friends until a divorce agreement is settled, then have it gifted back to them later.
- Has your spouse started making expensive purchases? Another way to conceal assets is to buy valuable pieces of property like art or antiques, then understate their actual value during the divorce. This called “converting cash to property.” After the divorce is final, the individual sells the property back at its original value and converts it back to cash.
Going through a divorce is difficult, and asset division can be a complex and challenging process. For many people, hidden assets may be the last thing on their minds, but the best way to go into divorce proceedings is to be educated and prepared. Tennessee is an equitable division state, and experienced family law attorneys can ensure that you receive your fair share of the marital assets.
Here at Miller Upshaw Family Law, PLLC, our experienced and dedicated attorneys can take some of the pressure of a divorce off of youby providing strategic and smart representation to clients in the Nashville area. Please call 615-391-4200 or use our contact form to schedule a consultation today.
Karla C. Miller has devoted her entire career to the practice of family law in Tennessee. She attended Auburn University and Nashville School of Law, and upon graduation in 1996, she opened her own law firm and has been assisting families throughout Tennessee since then. Learn more about Karla C. Miller here.