Most anyone in the high-income bracket isn't there because they are lucky. They tend to know what it takes to maximize revenue potential and minimize financial liabilities. In some cases, this might mean following strategies to hide assets from public view.
In the context of divorce, hiding assets is not an acceptable practice. Yet, it happens. Trust might have been a feature of a couple's relationship at one point, but it can wither under the pressure of marital dissolution. If that has happened in your case or trust was misplaced to begin with, it's entirely possible that assets may have been squirreled away over a long period of time.
Locating hidden assets takes skill
To achieve a binding divorce settlement, both parties have duty to fully disclose all the assets they have. This is necessary to achieve equitable distribution of all eligible joint property. If that duty is not met and suspicions surface after the divorce is finalized, it becomes possible for the injured ex-spouse to petition to have the whole case reopened. Considering the time, expense, emotional distress, and potential for harsh consequences from the court for intentional suppression, hiding assets is not worth it.
Those with deep experience in this area know there are many ways to conceal assets. Methods might include:
- Denying an asset ever existed.
- Stating an asset was lost.
- Deferred salary compensation.
- Manipulation of tax filings in previous years such that it yields a big refund after the divorce is finalized.
- Offshore bank accounts.
- Questionable property transfers or third-party debts.
These are only some of the most common indicators that hidden assets might be an issue as you seek to divorce and move on with your life. To ensure that the best interests of all parties are met, plan to work with attorneys with demonstrated experience in asset analysis and discovery methods.