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3 ways a spouse might hide assets in a divorce

On Behalf of | Dec 9, 2022 | Divorce

If you decide to end your marriage in a Pennsylvania court, the decision cannot take form without going through a legal process. This process might take months to complete. If your ex refuses to play by the rules, it could take even longer, such as if he or she tries to hide assets during your divorce.  

Hiding assets in a divorce is a form of perjury because state law requires both spouses to fully disclose information about their assets and liabilities. Hiding assets is dishonest, and the court can hold anyone who does it in contempt. If you accuse your ex of this underhanded means of trying to walk away with more than he or she may have a right to in a divorce, you have to be able to prove it in court.  

Loaning money is a way to hide assets in a divorce 

If your soon-to-be former spouse recently doled out money to a relative or friend, it might be cause for concern. Feigning a financial loan is one of the most common means of stashing cash or hiding assets in a divorce. In reality, a spouse attempting this scheme may have asked a friend or family member to hold on to money until a divorce is final.  

You might also want to further investigate a situation where your spouse claims to be paying back a loan. There may be an underlying situation of someone asked to set the money aside until you and your spouse have achieved a settlement.  

Did your spouse recently open a custodial account for your child? 

While it might be an unpleasant thought, it is definitely a red flag issue if your spouse has opened a bank account for your minor child, just before you were about to enter property division proceedings. As the parent whose name is on the account, your spouse would have access to the funds in the account at any time. Depositing money into a custodial account is an easy way to hide assets in a divorce.  

Was an expected pay bonus delayed? 

If you were expecting your spouse to receive a pay raise or bonus at work, but it never arrived, it is a good idea to inquire about it. Asking an employer to delay a bonus or pay raise is another common way that many spouses try to hide assets in a divorce. If the money never reaches your spouse, it won’t be subject to property division.  

If you hope to achieve a fair settlement in a Pennsylvania divorce, it is critical that your spouse is honest when the time comes to disclose assets and liabilities. The law is on your side, if you have evidence to show that your spouse is hiding assets. A family court judge may not look favorably on someone who is trying to beat the system.