It may be obvious why your ex wants to hide assets during your divorce. Maybe they’re hoping to lower their financial income level artificially so that they don’t have to pay child support. Maybe they’re just trying to keep from dividing those assets with you.
If you suspect that they’re going to do this, the next question to ask is how they’re going to do it. This is an illegal process, and discovering the assets can help you put things in their proper order once again. You do have a right to things like child support or fair property division, and your ex is not allowed to hide assets in order to skew the numbers. Let’s look at a few ways they may attempt this.
Overpaying on taxes or bills
One way to hide assets is simply by overpaying those who are already owed money, such as the IRS or even a credit card company. A lot of times, the overpayment will be returned later by a check. But this may take longer to happen than the divorce. So your ex can overpay, reducing their assets until the divorce is done, and then fail to tell you when they get that reimbursement check.
Giving money to others for alleged loans or debts
One of the more common tactics is to give money to a third party. For instance, your spouse could say that they needed to pay back an old loan that they took from their brother, or they could claim that they’re giving a business partner a loan to start their own company. There are plenty of different excuses, but, whichever one they use, what they’re really doing is just trying to move the money into that person’s name until after the divorce.
Buying things with a disputable value
Your ex may also try to turn things with a definite value, like the contents of a bank account, into something with a disputable value. They could buy a painting that is worth $50,000 and then claim it’s only worth $20,000. They’re just trying to make it appear that what they own isn’t as valuable as it really is, and then they can sell those assets after the divorce to bring in more money than they originally claimed they would get.
What steps can you take?
If your ex is hiding assets and breaking the law, then you need to know what steps you can take. There are ways to make sure that you get what is really fair in the divorce.