Texas couples who decide to divorce already have a lot on your plates. But when you start dealing with property division, the situation can get even trickier. Tensions and tempers run high, and sometimes, a spouse may try to hide assets from you.
But if your spouse tries to pull this off, they may be biting off more than they can chew. After all, hiding assets during divorce is a crime and the law treats it as such.
Why do spouses hide assets?
Forbes discusses the very severe consequences of hiding assets during the process of divorce. They also look at the why and how. Why do people hide assets? There are a wide array of reasons. Your spouse may feel like you do not “deserve” any of their assets. They may feel like the judge will hold bias in your favor. They might want to protect their assets, or they may simply want to spite you.
Ways people hide assets
The how can also vary greatly. Some may lie about debts to friends or family that they need to repay, which they intend to collect again after the divorce. Others hide actual cash in safe locations at their work, in their car or in another location you do not frequent. It can even get as complicated as creating fake employees to send paychecks to.
But lying about your assets is an act of perjury. When you begin the divorce process, you and your spouse signed a financial affidavit. This proves to the court that you are telling the truth about your finances. Thus, you are breaking the affidavit if you lie about your assets in an intentional way. This can lead to fines and time in jail. The judge overseeing your case gets to determine additional penalties.