Divorce’s property division process can have tremendous implications for your financial future. That’s why it’s important that you’re diligent in preparing for settlement discussions on this topic, keeping in mind that there’s always the potential for litigation. Part of that preparation is ensuring that all marital assets are included in the property division process. While Florida recognizes equitable, meaning fair, division of marital assets, you’re only going to receive your fair share if all marital assets are included in the process.
How to identify hidden assets
That may sound simple enough, but far too often individuals try to hide marital assets so that they can remove them from the property division process and keep those assets for their own personal use once the divorce is finalized. Here are some ways that you may be able to discover that your spouse is hiding assets:
- Your jointly held bank account shows withdrawals that are unexplained
- Payments to new lines of credit are unexpected and unexplained
- Your spouse retains a significant amount of control over the marital finances and refuses to give you access
- Your spouse has started receiving mail at a different address or at a post office box
- Your spouse complains about not having any money but his or her appearances show the acquisition of new assets, perhaps even large ones
- Your spouse claims that the family business has suffered more losses than normal
If any of these red flags exist in your case, then you may want to take a deeper dive into your marital financial records, including tax filings, to see if you can figure out whether assets are being hidden or squandered away. A forensic accountant may be able to assist you with that.
Use the law to ensure fairness in your divorce
Although it should be presumed that the parties to a divorce will act in fairness, the sad reality is that the onus tends to fall on the parties to ensure that the other said is playing by the rules. This means knowing the law and putting in the work to protect your interests. If you’d like to learn more about what that would look like in your case, then we encourage you to continue to research this area of the law and consider seeking the support that you need to navigate your divorce with confidence.