Getting an equitable share of your marital assets in your divorce can be difficult when you do not know how much there is to split up. Some couples share in all financial planning, so each spouse has a good idea of what assets they own and what they are worth. Other times, one spouse handles all the finances and earns all he income, leaving the other spouse largely in the dark about money matters.
Uncovering the size and value of the marital asset pile becomes even more complicated when one spouse is dishonest. Unfortunately, some high-income people going through divorce try to hide assets from their ex and the court, to keep those valuable assets for themselves -- even though the ex deserves a fair share too.
In an extreme case from outside of Virginia, a man has been sentenced to four years in prison for hiding millions of dollars in cash and gold during his divorce. Prosecutors said the man opened offshore accounts in Central America, in part under the name of a shell corporation, putting $4.6 million in that account alone. He later tried to bring the money back to the U.S. after the divorce was final, but federal authorities seized the funds.
Interestingly, according to the Anchorage Dispatch News, his ex-wife spoke up in his defense during the recent sentencing hearing, saying she was not victimized by her ex-husband’s conduct.
Even when both spouses reveal all they know about the marital property, sorting out marital from non-marital property can be tricky, and a lot of money can be at stake. That is why high-asset couples going through divorce need highly skilled legal representation.