In an equitable distribution state like Florida, a judge is often called upon to determine how to fairly distribute marital assets between the couple in alignment with the contributions they’ve made to the marriage. Even with this approach to asset division in place, it’s not uncommon for a spouse facing an end of his or her marriage to try to hide money, property or other valuables, especially if he or she fears losing them in a divorce.
Among the more common ways sneaky spouses attempt to hide their assets is by placing them in either safes or safety deposit boxes. They may also sink funds into secret investment portfolios or stock accounts. Spouses wanting to hide assets also often take the initiative to set up offshore accounts or buy foreign real estate. Others simply transfer ownership of their assets to close friends or family members.
If you suspect that your soon-to-be ex is hiding assets and he or she seems to be fairly tech savvy, then one of the first places you may want to check for evidence of hidden assets is his or her computer or smartphone. You may be able to learn a lot by simply looking through his or her browser history on your spouse’s computer or cellphone. You also may be able to learn a lot by combing through his or her social media profiles as well.
Phone finder apps or GPS ones installed on his or her phones can also be helpful as you look to undercover your spouse’s secret financial dealings. They can give you added insight into what they’ve been up simply by combing through the histories of where they’ve been.
Also, if you have access to your spouse’s email account, then receipts or messages may show where funds are being set aside. And, if you file electronic tax returns, you may be able to pinpoint assets you weren’t aware of.
Spouses hiding assets from the other is believed to occur in two out of every three marriages in the United States according to research conducted by the National Endowment for Financial Education. If you suspect that your spouse is hiding assets from you as you two prepare to divorce, then a Fort Myers, Florida, divorce attorney can help you determine whether it’s indeed happening