Is your spouse trying to cheat you out of marital assets?

On Behalf of | Apr 18, 2024 | Divorce

In a New Jersey divorce, you should walk away with your fair share of the marital estate. This doesn’t mean that the division has to be 50/50, but you will have room to argue for what you truly deserve. But you’re only going to get a fair shake from the property division process if you know all the assets that are in play. That might sound simple enough to do, but the sad reality is that spouses try to hide assets during divorce proceedings all the time.

If you let your spouse get away with that behavior, then you’re going to be left short-changed in the aftermath of your divorce. You certainly don’t want that to happen, which is why you need to call out your spouse for hiding marital assets when necessary. But how do you even know if they’re acting inappropriately and wrongly keeping assets out of the divorce’s property division process?

Signs that your spouse is hiding assets from you

To catch your spouse hiding assets from you, you’ll have to stay alert and be on the lookout. If you see any of the following signs, then it’s time to start asking questions and digging deeper to see if your spouse is trying to cheat you out of the resources you deserve:

  1. Your spouse keeps a tight rein on your marital finances: You and your spouse should both have access to key financial records during your marriage and especially during your divorce. If your spouse tries to keep you from viewing those records, then there’s a good chance that they’re trying to hide something. Use the discovery process to your advantage so that you can get your hands on the documentation that you need to accurately assess the marital estate.
  2. Your spouse starts making big purchases: Major assets shouldn’t be purchased during divorce. If your spouse starts buying things for themselves, then they’re likely using your marital funds for their own enjoyment. Be sure to raise this issue with your attorney if you think that your spouse is suddenly living more extravagantly than they should.
  3. Your spouse starts complaining about a pay decrease or an increase in expenses: Some cunning spouses try to hide their tracks by voicing concerns about decreased income or increased expenses. But this could be a sign that they’re trying to hide the fact that they’re misusing or stealing marital assets. Make sure you have access to their pay stubs and any other methods of income so that you can see what they’re actually bringing home.
  4. Your spouse gives gifts to friends and family members: To hide assets for later use, your spouse might give them as gifts to family members and friends who hold them only until the divorce is finalized. Again, your spouse shouldn’t unfairly dispose of your marital assets during divorce, so do your best to track where these assets are going.
  5. Marital assets disappear without explanation: This is an obvious clue that your spouse is hiding assets from you. If you discover that assets are missing or were used for some unjustified expense, then you need to confront your spouse to try to get answers.

Don’t let your spouse cheat you out of the assets you deserve

You deserve to secure the marital assets needed to obtain financial stability post-divorce. But it’s up to you to advocate for a fair and favorable outcome. If you don’t, then your spouse will take advantage of you and get more of the marital estate than they should. Don’t let that happen. Instead, carefully develop your legal strategy so that you can rest assured that you’ve done everything you can to protect your interests in your divorce.

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