As a couple in Michigan who has decided to get a divorce, you and your spouse have a lot of hurdles to jump. Not only that, as a couple with high assets, you could be facing struggles unique to people in your position.
For example, it is more common in high asset divorces for a person to try getting away with hiding assets. It often takes a professional with special training such as a forensic accountant to uncover hidden assets. Here are some ways many spouses hide assets in a divorce.
Often, hiding assets involves cash because it is harder to track. For example, spouses may hide assets through “debt repayment.” They may rope a willing friend or family member into holding on to money for them. They may claim that they are repaying a debt to that person.
Sometimes, a spouse may just decide to create literal cash stashes. He or she may withdraw extra money when going shopping for groceries or other items over a period of time and hide the cash in various places at home, in the car or a secret bank account to keep you from learning of it.
If your spouse has employees or runs any sort of business, he or she may even create fake employees and write paychecks to them, then hide that money. Unreported cash income falls under a similar category. By not reporting cash enterprises on financial statements or in tax returns, your spouse may keep you (and the IRS) from the knowledge of this income.
Stocks and investments
Keep an eye out for any attempts to delay stock options, raises or bonuses. If your spouse gets these before the final divorce decree, he or she must split it with you. Some may try to avoid this by putting these bonuses off.
Additionally, keep an eye out for investments. Is your spouse investing in bonds with no interest? These bonds will not be on tax returns. This may be a tactic to try to keep you unaware of their existence.