Property division is one of the most contentious issues in any divorce, more so when the couple cannot agree on how to divide the marital estate. In such cases, a judge will determine how the division will proceed, guided by state laws. This can only happen after the judge gets a clear picture of all assets under consideration.
You may be tempted to hide some assets or transfer them to a friend or use other ways to keep them from the divorce proceedings. However, you could get in legal trouble for that.
The potential consequences of hiding assets during divorce
Hiding assets from a divorce court is not taken lightly. If your spouse discovers the hidden assets and proves to the court that you were acting in bad faith, there are a raft of penalties you may face as a result.
First, you could lose ownership of the asset you were attempting to hide. The judge may decide to award your spouse ownership of the asset in the interests of justice. In addition, you may be held in contempt of court for lying under oath (perjury), and you could be fined or even jailed.
It may also indirectly affect other aspects of your divorce, such as custody and spousal support, since it may paint you as a dishonest and selfish person who will even lie or use deceptive tactics to have their way.
Safeguarding your rights during property division
Hiding assets is not a viable solution if you are looking to end up with what you deserve from the divorce. It is illegal, and the risk of doing so far outweighs the benefits.
Therefore it is necessary to understand how property division works and the other common mistakes you need to avoid along the way. It will help you safeguard your rights and save you unnecessary legal problems.