There are a multitude of reasons for a couple to divorce, but a commonality during this process is the loss of trust. With the breakdown of a marriage, many spouses forego their wedding vows and try to justify hiding assets from their soon-to-be-ex partner. We understand that this can be a contentious time for many couples, but the consequences of hiding assets can be costly, especially in community property states such as California.
If you suspect your spouse may be hiding assets during your divorce, know that you have options.
How to Look for Hidden Assets During a Divorce
California is a community property state. This means that any assets earned by either spouse belongs to both spouses equally, and they must be divided equally in the event of a divorce. Because of this, one spouse may hide, transfer, or undervalue property in an attempt to recover a greater share of marital assets.
Divorce attorneys and financial professionals are aware of these deceitful tactics and can help you find where they are hidden.
Step 1: Request a copy of financial records from your spouse. If your spouse handled the finances, you want to get a clear picture of what you’re dealing with. However, your spouse may not want to give up this information voluntarily.
Step 2: The discovery process. This is the legal process of getting information and documents. Attorneys and judges will use several methods, including document demands, requests for admission, inspection demands, and testimonies given under oath. The discovery process typically works with uncooperative spouses because the court has the authority to impose penalties if they do not comply.
Step 3: Ask for the right documents. During the discovery process, you can request documents that will uncover hidden assets. Some examples of places to look include tax returns, checking and savings account statements, potential hidden bank accounts, and copies of canceled checks.
Through this process, you must have the right legal representation by your side. Don’t assume that your attorney will automatically know how to look for hidden assets. At the Gill Law Firm, our attorneys know how to conduct a thorough financial investigation to ensure that all assets are uncovered and properly recorded. We also have an in-house CPA that better equips us to handle cases that involve business owners or complex financial portfolios. We guarantee that our firm will be present at every step of your divorce process to ensure that you receive your fair share of property.
Contact the Gill Law Group at (949) 681-9952 to begin your complimentary consultation today.