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When you and your spouse decided to file papers in a California court to obtain a divorce, you likely agreed that both of you would try to keep your children’s best interests in mind. That may be why you thought nothing of it when your spouse opened a bank account for one of your kids; in fact, you may have thought it was kind and helpful.

However, now you’re not so sure because your spouse seems to be quite secretive about the account, perhaps getting defensive when you inquire about it. Then there was that day when you could have sworn there was more money in your joint account than there actually was, and you uncovered evidence of a recent withdrawal that you were not aware had taken place.

What is going on?

Sponsoring a child’s account or moving money out of a jointly owned bank account are common ways that many California spouses have used to try to hide assets in divorce. Not only might this type of problem may you angry and cause you to feel betrayed, it is illegal as well. The following list shows other ways your spouse may be trying to gain an upper hand in property division proceedings:

  • By asking an employer to defer compensation
  • By overpaying a credit card balance
  • By overpaying taxes
  • By pretending to loan someone money
  • By pretending to be paying back a personal loan to a family member or friend
  • By stashing cash in a safe deposit box, drawer, closet or other hiding place

While it’s understandable that your temper would soar if you discovered evidence that your spouse is hiding assets, rectifying the situation necessitates calm, clear thinking and knowing where to seek immediate support. The court will not take kindly to a spouse who is trying to beat the system, so it’s definitely something you want to bring to the court’s attention as soon as possible.

What then

California happens to be a community property state, meaning the court typically splits marital assets 50/50 in divorce. You will not be getting your fair share if your spouse is not being transparent and fully disclosing assets. There are people who know exactly how to investigate such matters, and they can help you gather evidence and address the matter before a judge.