Identifying Hidden Assets in Divorce

Hidden assets in divorce may be an issue if you’re in the middle of a complex separation. An uncontested or straightforward divorce usually involves little to no property. However, the issue of assets will come into play if two of you have a lot of commingled finances. Your spouse might not want to share certain assets with you, which may cause him or her to hide them. Here’s a little information on finding hidden assets during a divorce:

The Items You’ll Need To Find

You need to gather the maximum amount of information about your spouse’s finances. That means you’ll need to know about that person’s income taxes, work accounts, loan documents, financial accounts, retirement funds, etc.

The court uses the information to make alimony, child support, and asset distribution decisions. Some of those items may be difficult to track down if your spouse feels they belong to him or her alone. Retirement funds are usually tough to trace, for example. However, you will need to grab hold of it the best way you can because it’s crucial to your divorce case’s progress. Such cases go much faster when all the information is available. 

Try Talking to Your Spouse

You can try talking to your spouse to gather the information first. Try explaining how beneficial it would be to the case if your spouse were to hand over the data. You’ll be fortunate if your spouse is the type who wants to take proactive steps to advance the divorce proceedings. On the other hand, your impending ex might be highly elusive. A mediator can help you communicate with the person more effectively.

Use Some Search Tools

The search process is so much easier because of advanced technological tools. Thus, you can take several avenues to get the information you need. You can try sifting through public records or using someone’s investigative services. Background check companies may be helpful to you as well.

You might even want to employ the services of a private investigator. If you still have access to the home, you can search the computer’s hard drive or the secret safes and filing cabinets your spouse doesn’t let anyone go near. You never know what information you might come up with using those methods. 

Talk to an Attorney

If all else fails, you can always have confidence in an attorney’s services. Lawyers can track down information when most other parties can’t. They have the power to "demand" such information by way of subpoenas and court notices. It won’t be a bad idea to speak to a lawyer since you’ll most likely need one for your divorce anyway. The attorney may be willing to add the "discovery" services to your bill or include it in the overall fees for the legal services provided. 

Whatever you do, don’t give up. Keep at it until you get the information you need to progress in the case. You’ll need to get the most out of your divorce process so that your life and everyone else’s will be comfortable.