Thanks to tax obligations and technology, finding hidden assets is easier than you think. If you are in the process of getting a divorce, knowing how and where to look for hidden assets can make a difference in how much you and your spouse ultimately walk away with in the divorce decree. Here are some tips to help you track down assets you suspect your spouse is hiding.
Start With the Tax Return
The tax return is more than just another financial document. It can contain clues about assets your spouse has tucked away. Although he or she might be able to hide those assets from you, hiding them from the government could land your spouse in hot water.
Your spouse's tax return can help you find secret assets, such as hidden real estate investments. For instance, if your spouse owns any rental property, it will be listed in the rental income section of the tax return. Even if your spouse lost money on the investment, he or she is required to include information about the asset.
You can also find out if your spouse has been truthful about his or her earnings. Your spouse has to document the amounts that he or she actually earned. If you notice a significant difference in what was reported to the Internal Revenue Service and what he or she told you, it is possible your spouse has a secret bank account.
Check Your Internet History
The computers or mobile phones in your home might hold the key to finding hidden assets. Many people manage their financial accounts online. If your spouse is doing so, it is possible that he or she is forgetting to clear the history after checking those accounts.
After checking the Internet history, conduct an online search for your spouse's name, email address, and phone number. A simple search of your spouse's name can possibly produce social and business networking accounts. For instance, a search of his or her phone number could yield a rental listing for a property he or she owns.
You could even possibly find social networking profiles that your spouse uses for business connections. With a few clicks, you could potentially uncover a hidden business venture.
Finding assets can take time. Consult with a family law attorney like those at Kalamarides & Lambert to find other ways to discover whether or not your spouse is keeping financial secrets from you and the court.