It isn't uncommon to want to protect your things. This is why people put money in banks, items in safes and even take measures to ensure security at a household. It is no difference if a divorce. Spouses want to protect what they believe is his or hers; however, spouses may also be compelled to give up what isn't essentially theirs. In some cases, spouses might take steps to hide assets to avoid having them divided in the divorce process.
What happens when a spouse hides assets during dissolution? Although the Patriot Act going into effect in 2001 made it more difficult to hide assets in offshore accounts; however, this was designed to prevent individuals from evading taxes. Nonetheless, when a spouse is caught hiding assets in an offshore account, he or she could face serious criminal penalties that could land them in prison for several years.
In a community property state, it is common for divorcing spouses to reduce the pool of assets that need to be split in half. And for wealthy couples parting ways, it is likely that some scheme might be conjured up as an attempt to save certain assets from being divided. Another reason for hiding assets would be to reduce support payments. Whether it is spousal or child support, one may be compelled to hide assets in order to reduce his or her worth.
When a spouse suspects that assets might be hidden during the divorce process, it is vital to understand the matter. This means exploring ways to uncover whether or not assets have been hidden. It also means determining what can be done when hidden assets are uncovered. It is always important to ensure your rights and interests are protected.