At the end of a marriage, a number of things have to be split between the two spouses. Those things include time with the children and marital assets. Splitting time with the children is done all the time based on formulas, but marital assets can be difficult if the husband has been the breadwinner and has hidden assets during the marriage or in preparation for the divorce, which may include alimony and child support. Even though technology has made it fairly easy to hide assets, there are still ways to uncover them.
Hire a company that specializes in asset searches. Just as technology has facilitated the hiding of assets, technology has also allowed an industry to exist with experts who can locate assets your husband may have hidden. A company specializing in asset searches can help you locate vehicles, businesses, financial instruments and property in your husband's name. Alternatively, hire a divorce attorney or private investigator.
Hire a forensic accountant who specializes in poring through financial records. She may discover assets you have access to, but may not have thought about, such as investment accounts, timeshares, tax refunds and royalty payments.
Conduct your own investigation of records that you may either prepare for a professional or examine yourself with specific targets. Contact the IRS and request copies of tax returns going back at least five years. No matter what your husband may have told you, chances are he told the IRS something closer to the truth.
Search through the county records office under your husband's name to see if any real estate transactions have occurred without your knowledge, including the transfer of property to a relative or a business that someone else owns.
Check the bank history, including ATM records on any joint accounts that may have had large sums of money pass through in a short time period, particularly the time period immediately before the divorce. Request copies of bank statements going back at least five years. These records may show a pattern of financial activity that suddenly changes, or a stream of revenue that suddenly stops.
Check your own credit report. Some financial activity may show up on your credit report, tying you to your husband during the marriage.
Demand payment records from your husband's employer through the Human Resources Department. There may be some discomfort in the interaction, but you have the legal right to these records, which may reveal bonuses, commissions and deferred payments that should be marital property.
Items you will need
- Bank statements
- Divorce attorney
- Private investigator
- Forensic accountant
- Employer information
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