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Is your spouse hiding assets in your divorce?

Divorce is hard enough without having to worry that your spouse is concealing and converting valuable marital assets to his or her own personal property. While some attempts to hide assets are quite transparent, others are downright devious. Read on to learn ways that a dishonest ex can attempt to cheat you out of what is rightfully yours during a divorce.

Siphoning joint funds into a separate account

This fraudulent move is relatively easy to spot unless it's done slowly over a long time. It's more common in marriages where one spouse handles all the finances. If you are the less financially savvy spouse in your marriage, change that by learning the basics and insisting on reviewing the monthly accounts

Transferring assets to relatives or friends

Systematic transfers of stock or cash to a complicit friend's or relative's account reduces the jointly owned assets or funds. Then, when the divorce is finally settled, the assets get transferred back to a separate account set up only in your ex's name.

Making cash withdrawals on debit cards

Every time your ex purchases household goods or groceries with a debit card, he or she presses "yes" when the card reader asks if the customer wants cash back. It's possible to squirrel away a nice little nest egg in increments of less than $100 over a few months or even weeks. If your grocery bills seem to be more expensive than ever, ask to see some receipts.

Paying too much in federal taxes

This one is diabolical, because it manages to involve the Internal Revenue Service in its duplicity. Individuals who plan to divorce the next year could inform the IRS that they want their tax refund to be applied to the following year's tax burden. When next year rolls around and your ex is legally divorced, he or she has a big cushion built up against any tax liabilities.

Just saying no to raises and job promotions

Those in the midst of divorce may candidly ask their bosses to hold off on any changes to the status quo at work that would increase the amount of spousal or child support they would owe to their exes.

Delaying commissions

After a major sales coup, your ex could ask his or her boss to hold the commission until next quarter, ostensibly for tax purposes.

Don't get mad - get an attorney

If reading the above made you see red and you suspect that your soon-to-be ex may be up to no good regarding your jointly-held assets, hold your temper and use your head. Retain a Montgomery family law attorney and share your concerns about disappearing assets with him or her. Your attorney can recommend a forensic accountant to scrutinize the financial accounts owned by you and your former spouse. If you find discrepancies, your attorney can inform the court of the fraud.

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