Divorce is typically a time of emotional upheaval, but it can and often is a time of financial upheaval as well. The property division process during a divorce may leave many in Pennsylvania wondering if financial fraud may be at play by the other party in the divorce. Experienced family law lawyers can enlist the help of outside resources to pinpoint if fraud in the form of hidden assets or missing assets is an issue that needs to be dealt with as a divorce proceeding moves forward.
An attorney might enlist services from forensic accountants to discover if fraud is an issue. This will allow for the tracing of funds and can outline a paper trail of what may have unfolded during the marriage. A thorough review of old tax returns, credit card activity and business spending can uncover many types of fraudulent or deceptive activity of which one party may be unaware.
While proof of fraud is being sought, there are a few indicators a soon-to-be ex-spouse may be red flags for deceptive activity. One is if mail is being sent to another location rather than the marital residence. If there are withdrawals that are unusual or there is unusual activity online, these might be red flags indicating fraud. Also, if money is being given to family members or friends without the consent of the other partner, one partner may be attempting to conceal funds so as to defraud the other spouse.
Mistrust and suspicion are often unfortunate side effects of a Pennsylvania divorce. While intentional fraud may be rare, it does occur. Divorcing spouses who are concerned with their financial future should know the signs and ways to uncover suspected fraud. Once all assets are accounted for, properly evaluated and any attempts to defraud a spouse are stopped, property division negotiations can move forward with fairness and full accountability.
Source: huffingtonpost.com, “Financial Fraud and Divorce“, Peggy L. Tracy, Oct. 2, 2015