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Hiding assets during divorce illegal, but often done

It is clear that hiding assets from an estranged spouse during a divorce is illegal, but some still do it. Over 30 percent of all adults surveyed who had assets combined with those of a partner or spouse admitted that they had lied about some financial issues. This especially occurs in a high-asset divorce in New Orleans and nationwide, as a spouse with many assets has more to lose and more varied ways to conceal income and property than those with fewer assets.

When someone suspects that a spouse is engaged in this illegal hide and seek game, there may be many ways of tracking down the hidden assets. In today's highly technological financial environment, some of the needed information may literally be just a few clicks of the mouse away from detailed disclosure.

Online brokerage accounts, safe deposit boxes containing cash or stock certificates, and real estate holdings can all be searched for using a variety of online tools. Records of calls made on cell phones can sometimes uncover suspect behavior. A person may also be able to view web browsing history and uncover visits to odd bank websites or find evidence of undisclosed business ventures.

However, just as hiding assets is illegal, so are some of the methods some spouses use to try and uncover the behavior. Discovering deceitful behavior may not matter if a person has found it through illegal means. Consulting an attorney prior to engaging in any possibly unlawful behavior may be a good idea. An experienced lawyer can advise a person on the legal ways of tracking any hidden assets.

Source: Yahoo! Finance, "Why it's getting harder to hide money from your spouse," Veronica Dagher, May 4, 2012

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