According to a report released by CreditCards.com, about 7.2 million people in the U.S. keep a credit card or bank account hidden from their partner, and your spouse could be doing the same. If you and your spouse have significant assets to divide during divorce, concealing property can make it harder to reach a fair settlement.
If you suspect your spouse is trying to hide assets as you divide marital assets, there are a few signs that could confirm your intuition is correct.
- You discover unfamiliar credit and bank account statements.
Your spouse could try to secretly transfer money into a separate account from your shared accounts. Watch for statements from banking institutions that only list the name of your spouse.
- Your spouse has become increasingly secretive.
Your spouse may have started to hide assets if he or she tries to keep you from looking at bank or credit card statements or signing into your online bank account. Your spouse may also have started to hide assets if he or she shreds paper statements before you can see them.
- Your spouse has started underreporting income.
If your spouse owns a business or receives payments in cash for work performed, he or she could try to underreport earnings to hide profits during the property division process.
- Your spouse starts spending money on expensive assets.
If, for example, your spouse recently purchased an expensive car or started investing in artwork or jewelry, he or she may have begun trying to convert funds into tangible assets. During divorce negotiations, he or she may attempt to underreport the true value of these items.
- Your spouse begins gifting money or property to others.
While giving assets and money to friends and loved ones may seem generous, it is a tactic often used to hide property. After finalizing the divorce, your spouse may try to reclaim these items from the recipients.
If you believe your soon-to-be ex-spouse is hiding assets, it is be a good idea to contact a family law attorney. They can help you to investigate and determine what assets you are entitled to receive.