Ever been to a wedding where the couple vows to share all of their financial information with each other until the end of their lives? Probably not, but some people believe that such commitments go without saying. They believe that partners tying the sacred knot are supposed to share everything, every penny, or at least all of the information about every penny they have. It is why many take hiding money as a clear sign of a broken bond.
In many cases, a secret stash may actually be a telltale sign of trouble in paradise. And, to tell the truth, it isn’t necessarily the wrong thing to do in some cases. Couples that make the mistake of compromising their financial independence from the very beginning of a relationship often find themselves hiding money months before proceeding with a separation. Fortunately, or unfortunately, doing it without any trace is becoming harder by the day.
Why Can’t You Hide Money from Your Spouse Anymore?
Technology is to blame for a lot of trouble these days. Almost everything we do online leaves a digital footprint behind. Online transactions have made it easier for people or their legal advisors to trace every bit of a secret stash the other half is hiding. The evidence one can gather from digital tracking is much stronger than a paper trail. This is quite good news for lawyers as it has helped many of them get their clients the compensation they deserved. In one of such cases, a husband ended up paying millions of dollars because he tried to hide money without paying heed to the digital evidence he was leaving behind.
Should You Hide Your Assets From Your Spouse?
The question that arises here is whether or not it is ethical to hide money. The answer may vary from situation to situation. In some scenarios, hiding some money is actually akin to ensuring your own financial security and avoiding bankruptcy. However, it is always unethical and if you suspect your spouse is doing the same, you can take legal action to get the amount that you deserve.
How your Partner can Hide Money from You
Transfer to Another Account – If you have a joint account, your partner can gradually move your assets to an individual account. In some cases, people even resort to moving their money to a friend’s account. It is a slow and systematic process. If you are not careful and vigilant, you will end up losing money. So, keep your eyes open.
Life Insurance – Hiding money isn’t the only way your spouse can keep you in the dark about their assets. It may not be the easiest path, but with a sly advisor, anyone can use life insurance as a way out of an expensive separation.
Overpaying IRS – This may not sound like a smart strategy, but sometimes people overpay their taxes for the year to avoid paying during the divorce. They can tell the IRS to use that money for the years to come. Now, this strategy that doesn’t sound smart is actually quite effective as money hidden this way is quite difficult to trace.
Faking Expense – For people who have their own businesses, it is easy to fake huge expenses in order to hide their assets. They can add unusually huge expenses in order to reduce the amount of profit and income earned. Sometimes those expenses can be real, but completely unnecessary. For instance, they may be expensive décor items that can later be sold for almost the same price.
Delay Payments – Sometimes people tell their employers or clients to delay their payments only to hide money from their spouse. They ask them to postpone the payments until after the divorce. A good way to avoid this situation is to keep an eye on your partner’s projects and paychecks. If you observe an unusual delay, discuss it with your attorney.
The only way to avoid a situation such as these is to keep your eyes open. No matter how much you loved each other, never put complete and blind trust in your partner. Hiding money from a spouse is a common practice but, if you are vigilant, you can trace every penny.
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