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Hiding assets during a divorce is risky

On Behalf of | Sep 10, 2020 | Divorce |

In Connecticut, divorcing spouses typically receive an equitable share of the marital estate. Therefore, while you may not end up with exactly half of everything you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse own, you should have enough to begin your post-divorce financial life. 

Of course, if your spouse hides assets in the lead-up to your divorce, you may end up with significantly less than your rightful share. While there are ways to find hidden assets, concealing marital wealth is risky for the deceptive spouse. 

Inequitable division of marital wealth

During divorce proceedings, both you and your spouse have a legal duty to disclose income and assets. If your husband or wife fails to do so, a judge may award you more than an equitable share of the concealed wealth. 

As a result, your deceptive spouse may end up with less than his or her fair share. 

Potential criminal consequences

Divorcing spouses often make financial declarations under the penalty of perjury. Accordingly, if your spouse is not forthcoming about marital wealth, he or she may be vulnerable to potential criminal charges. 

Likewise, if your husband or wife must commit fraud or otherwise violate the law when hiding assets, a criminal prosecution may be likely. 

Contempt of court

Judges have broad authority over what happens in their courtrooms. If a judge believes your husband or wife is actively trying to deceive the court, he or she may hold your spouse in contempt. 

While contempt of court may be less scary than potential criminal charges, either threat or the possibility of receiving less may encourage your spouse to be truthful about your marital assets from the outset.