Law Offices of Matthew S. Schultz, P.C.

Identifying hidden assets during divorce

There are many ways a person might discover that his or her spouse is hiding assets during a divorce in Arizona. This might be done because a spouse is trying to avoid sharing assets during the divorce, conceal an affair or both of these things. For example, one woman discovered that her husband was having an affair with a woman in another state. He had set up a separate entity there of a company he had in his home state. The company's address was the woman's apartment.

Changes in spending patterns, transferring money between accounts or not allowing a spouse access to shared financial records may all be indications that something is wrong. Looking at a pay stub can reveal whether a person is putting money into a health savings account or another account as a way of lowering his or her income. In some cases, a spouse may have a claim on these assets in a divorce. One man overpaid estimated taxes in the hopes he would be able to file as single after the divorce and reclaim the money.

Some tax documents may indicate that something may be happening financially that should be investigated further. For example, Form 1099-R indicates that a distribution has been made from a retirement account. Schedule B or Schedule D could also show suspicious financial activity.

Property division in Arizona, a community property state, is supposed to be equal. This means that if only one person in the marriage has a retirement account, his or her spouse may be able to get half of that account. If an individual has had the account since before the marriage, the amount it has increased in value since the marriage may be calculated, and his or her spouse may get that amount. However, couples may choose other ways to divide property besides splitting everything 50/50.

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Law Offices of Matthew S. Schultz

401 W. Baseline Road, Suite 203 Tempe, AZ 85283 Phone: 480-900-6032 Map & Directions