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The Top Ways Your Spouse Can Hide Money Through His Work
Why is it important to thoroughly investigate whether your husband is hiding money during the divorce process?
Hiding your true income is an art form, and it is a major issue in more than one half of the family law cases that I encounter. A review of this set of FAQ'S will help you determine if your husband is hiding or lying about his true income. All husbands cry that they are broke during the divorce. The more devious that your husband is, then the more likely that he is hiding money. If your husband has lied to you about money issues in the past, then there is a very good chance that he is hiding money through his employment.
In many cases, a husband will complain about his dire financial situation in the hope that he will persuade his wife, her lawyer and the court that he has no money and that he is on the verge of bankruptcy. However, recent studies indicate that shortly after a divorce the husband's finances soar upward, and the wife's finances often go down the tubes.
Your husband may also be trying to hide his true income to help him obtain a lower child support and an alimony award. It is your responsibility and of your lawyer to try to uncover any hidden monies, and to prove the actual amount of money that your husband is truly earning. The more money that you uncover, then the higher your child support and alimony will be. In summary, if you want a great result in your divorce case then you will have to earn it. Don't just expect your husband to offer you the world. If your husband is not forthcoming, then it is your duty to find out all of his income information.
What are the top schemes that a devious husband can use to hide his money during a divorce?
What are the top perks that devious husbands use to hide their money?
Some of the most common perks that husbands use to distort their true income are as follows:
Should I also try to investigate how my husband is paid his bonus(es) during the divorce process?
Absolutely! I have seen many cases wherein a husband has deferred his bonus to the future year(s) so as to reduce his child support and alimony. Many men receive bonuses in addition to their regular paycheck. You should be particularly aware for any side deals wherein partial bonuses are paid, and the other portion of the bonus is deposited into a separate account that accrues to the benefit of the employee. It is important to emphasize that bonuses can be deferred for future distribution. A careless wife can lose thousands of dollars if she does not conduct reasonable discovery on her husband's bonuses.
My husband always goes on exciting business trips. Are these trips also included as income when the court determines child support and alimony?
Yes, the fair market of the value of these trips could be considered to be income, and it could be added to your husband's yearly income. Does your husband's employer pay for his stays at hotels when the business part of the trip has been completed? Some husbands are permitted to take their wife on the business trip. You should inquire to see whether his girlfriend was a guest. Your husband's employer may allow him to use a summer home or other vacation home that is owned by the business.
Should I investigate my husband's vacation pay during the divorce case?
Yes, the vacation pay also could be valued and added to your husband's yearly income. If your husband gets four weeks vacation and only takes two weeks off he may receive two weeks additional pay.
Should I investigate my husband's unused sick and personal days during the divorce process?
Yes, your husband may have a significant amount of unused sick or personal days. I have handled cases wherein a police officer was entitled to a payment of more than $100,000 for accumulated sick days after he retired. If your husband does not use his personal days or sick days, he may get paid for the days he doesn't use.
During our marriage my husband always received stock options as part of his pay package. Should the value of his stock options also be included in his yearly income?
Absolutely! Stocks options can be worth a tremendous amount of money. Alternately, stock options can be worth peanuts. Nonetheless, always thoroughly review any information that you receive about your husband's stock options. If you ignore this issue in your divorce, then you could be cheating yourself out of a significant amount of money. A stock option is the right to buy stock in that company at a reduced rate. If your husband exercises the option, then he may have a valuable asset which you are not aware of. He may even tell you he did not exercise the option and that he lost it.
My husband is provided a membership to a very prestigious country club and swanky health club…
These club dues are paid by his employer. Is the value of these perks also included in his income?
My husband is crying the blues, and he claims that he has a $50,000 loan to his employer. How should I verify if this loan is real?
If your husband wants to increase his debts, and make himself appear poorer to the court then he may create a fictitious loan with a friend, an employer, or a family member. Many devious husbands create a fictitious bleak financial situation so that they can get an edge up in their case. Don't fall for this baloney. Insist on obtaining full disclosure of any and all loan documents, and if necessary you should conduct discovery on the party who allegedly lent your husband any money.
What else should I investigate if I have a "hunch" that my husband is hiding money, and making himself appear poorer than he actually is?
You should be on the look out for any possible signs that your husband may have a special arrangement with his employer at his job. You should inquire if his employer pays some of his personal expenses or pays him a percentage of the profits. Moreover, you should also inquire whether your husband actually owns a percentage of the company he works for and is, therefore, not an employee but an owner/employer.
New Jersey has five types of spousal support. Rehabilitative alimony is a short-term monetary award that allows a spouse to go back to school or obtain training to re-enter the workforce. Limited duration alimony is awarded in cases of a short marriage when rehabilitative alimony doesn't apply. Reimbursement alimony is awarded when one spouse makes a personal sacrifice so that the other spouse could receive professional or career training. Alimony pendente lite is awarded when a divorce is pending so that both parties can maintain their current standard of living until a final judgment is made. Finally, there is permanent alimony which is usually appropriate in long term marriages and typically terminates upon the death of either party or remarriage.
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Author: Mary L. Boland, Attorney at Law
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