Preparing for divorce often involves taking stock of your financial circumstances. You need to understand what property you share and what debts you both owe to estimate what you might receive from property division proceedings.
The California community property standard ensures that you can share in all property and income from during the marriage. You will also share partial responsibility for marital debts, even if the account is only in your ex’s name.
However, if your ex hides property from you, their actions could unfairly influence the outcome of your divorce. You can’t receive property that you don’t ask for, and the courts can’t divide assets unless they have knowledge of their existence and value. How do you determine if your ex has hidden property?
Review their inventory of assets
Both of you will need to provide information about your personal holdings to each other and the courts. If you look closely at your ex’s disclosures, you may realize that they have hidden certain property or undervalued it. On the other hand, you may realize that their income is higher than you thought, which means that some of their paychecks may not have gone into a joint account.
Forensic accountants can be helpful when you believe that your spouse diverted funds from shared accounts during your marriage. They can help you track missing funds and even locate hidden accounts, all of which can help you claim your fair share from the marital estate.
If you can locate and properly value hidden assets, you can fight for a more appropriate division of your property. Understanding the rules for property division in California divorces will help those trying to plan for their future.