Some lucky couples can work together and file for an amicable divorce, but for many others, fighting over every detail soon becomes the norm. Unfortunately, there are people who see their divorce as a way to ruin their spouse’s life and take full advantage of any tricks they can think of.
Besides the fact that many tricks are illegal, any tricks you may pull ruin any chance that you and your spouse can work out a settlement without going to court. Having a judge hear your case may seem like a great idea, but you stand to lose a lot in the process, too. A divorce that drags out for months and ends in court costs much more than an amicable one and adds months of stress to your life.
If you suspect your spouse has sunk to the “playing tricks” level, the first thing you need to do is talk to your attorney. Make sure to let him/her know why you think your spouse is hiding money or assets and bring any proof that you may have. Even if you don’t have any actual proof, your suspicions are important and your lawyer will know what steps to take to discover the truth.
You may need to hire an accountant to check all of your financial documents and find out whether money or other assets have been hidden. Most lawyers have used the experts you need for other divorce cases and can contact them for you. A private investigator may also be used to check documents for the sale of any large assets.
Any experts that are hired may be asked to appear in court on your behalf. The cost of their fees will be added to your overall bill for your divorce. These fees can be a few hundred dollars or more. Your attorney should be able to give you a good idea how much hiring an expert will cost before one is hired so you can decide if the assets you believe are hidden are worth the effort.
Remember that playing tricks almost always backfires. Never accuse your spouse of any wrong-doing just because you think making him/her look bad will win you points with the judge. If you are caught, you will be the one who looks bad in court and judge’s favor honesty over any other detail in a divorce case. Only accuse your spouse of hiding assets if you truly believe it is happening. Let your lawyer deal with the finding the assets and getting the proof you need.
If you are currently involved in a divorce and require legal guidance, before you spend thousands of dollars in legal fees, check out our free 7-Day “Divorce 101” course. Sign up below and you’ll immediately start receiving tips and guidance you can use to minimize the pain and time required to get through the divorce process.