For a Chicago resident with high assets, divorce can get complex. After all, asset division is one of the most complicated parts of the process. It often takes the most time and money and has complex governing laws.
Unfortunately, people sometimes take advantage of this. Your spouse might try to use the complexities of asset division to lie about their own assets. What can happen if they get caught?
What is a financial affidavit?
Forbes discusses lying about assets during divorce. First, this is an act of perjury. You sign a financial affidavit at the start of a contested divorce. This is your way of promising the court that you will not lie intentionally. If your spouse attempts to hide assets, they are invalidating this promise.
There are also documented cases where judges react harshly to spouses that try to hide assets. One anecdotal story mentions a woman who won the lottery shortly before divorce, but did not report it. After discovering this money, the judge ordered it all to go to the husband.
How can you hide assets?
It is also important to remember that there are multiple ways to lie about assets. A spouse may pretend they have fewer assets than they actually do by:
- Pretending to pay employees that do not exist
- Hiding side-jobs that are cash only
- Not listing “smaller” sources of income
- Not listing secondary properties, vehicles, etc.
Some of these methods are harder to detect than others. If you have a large number of assets that you struggle to track, forensic financial experts might help determine the true extent of the potential deceit.