Divorce is never a happy topic, or one that couples look forward to broaching, but for some, it is inevitable. If one spouse realizes before the other that divorce is in his or her future, he or she might begin to hide assets. Hiding assets is illegal and it is done in an effort to avoid sharing everything equally when divorce occurs.

A telltale sign that your spouse is hiding assets is that bank statements and other financials documents have stopped arriving at your home in the mail. Now, many financial institutions offer online banking, which comes with electronic statements. But there are some documents that are still sent via mail. Check with all of your banks and financial institutions to ensure you receive copies of all statements.

Did your spouse overpay the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) when filing taxes this year? If so, this could be a sign he or she is hiding assets. When someone overpays the IRS, it goes on record as a credit. Or, that person can receive a refund at a later date. Presumably this refund would come after the divorce is final. If so, this means you will not see a penny of this money.

If your spouse has a sudden decrease in salary, it could mean he or she is deferring compensation or bonuses for a later date. This could be an intentional ploy to make sure you don't receive any of this money should the two of you file for divorce.

If your spouse owns a business and has stopped bringing in clients out of the blue, it could be a sign of hidden assets. What this means is that if the business is worth less, there is less to divide during divorce. It's possible your spouse could send payments out to family and friends and ask them not to cash the check until a certain date.

Hiding assets is illegal. If you suspect your spouse is hiding assets, the valuation process during divorce will be more important than ever. An experienced family law attorney can help you understand your rights in this situation in Columbus, Ohio.

Source: The Good Men Project, "Signs That Your Spouse is Hiding Assets," Sinta Ebersohn, April 21, 2017

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