Five underhanded tactics used by husbands in divorce.
How Columbus divorce attorneys deal with a dishonest spouse.
Going up against your husband in a legal battle may feel like a David and Goliath circumstance. If you’re like many married women, you trust your husband to handle the household finances and operate with the understanding that he holds yours, and your family’s, best interests at the top of the totem pole.
But now you’re facing a divorce, and nothing is certain. Is he hiding assets from you? What was really on that tax return you signed last year?
As Miles Mason, Sr., JD, CPA, author of The Forensic Accounting Deskbook: A Practical Guide to Financial Investigation and Analysis for Family Lawyers, points out, it’s critical to blow the whistle on husbands hiding assets because divorcing women are often too timid or repressed to report their husbands’ dirty tricks. Why? Because divorce victims mirror fraud victims.
“Fraud victims are often too embarrassed to report the crime,” Miles explains. “Spouses married to persons lying, cheating and stealing in the divorce become demoralized. The spouse counts on the victim’s will breaking down. Victims blame themselves and want to settle for less than a reasonable settlement.”
We’ve seen these five underhanded tricks, described by Forbes contributor Jeff Landers, that husbands use against their spouses time and again. Learn how our Columbus divorce attorney team at Weis + O'Connor can help you avoid these pitfalls and come out the other side of your divorce with what you deserve.
1. Delay of game. A husband can drag out the divorce process indefinitely by filing motion upon motion, rescheduling hearings and filing requests for evidence. By stalling, he’s not only jacking up her legal costs but also stretching out living expenses, all in an effort to run his spouse dry until she has no choice but to agree to an unfair settlement.
2. Pressure you to settle too quickly. A husband who wants his wife to agree to a “quick” settlement may be trying to hide something. He could be counting on you to cave under pressure, or to not do your due diligence. In the rush, you could miss a substantial chunk of the assets he’s hiding and agree to far less than you’re entitled to.
At Weis + O'Connor, we maintain a network of accountants, business valuation experts, appraisers and real estate experts to help us determine not only the value of assets, but to uncover anything your ex may be hiding. We do all of the digging for you, so that any discovery documents concerning marital assets, income sources, expenses and debt will come to light before you sign the final papers.
3. Deny access to finances. For many women who were stay-at-home moms or simply didn’t have a hand in the family finances, they are completely in the dark as to what their marital estate is. Ladies frequently sign tax returns every year without reading them, in good faith that their partner will uphold his end of the marriage bargain. At Weis + O'Connor, we will explain all the paperwork, from balance sheets to income breakdowns, so you feel confident and hopeful about your financial future.
In the meantime, however, husbands can take advantage of their wife’s lack of knowledge by cutting off access to credit cards and moving money out of family accounts. This is especially problematic for abused women who live in constant fear of harm—to themselves and/or their children.
4. Hide assets. Hiding assets during a divorce is a huge no-no. It’s underhanded and illegal—but without the right attorney, the chances of your knowing if your husband is being unethical is close to zero. This is especially true if you’ve had little involvement with your finances, as your husband could be hoarding assets you never knew existed.
5. Fail to pay court-ordered support or refuse to relinquish assets. Husbands who don’t follow court orders are breaking the law—and often get away with it. This forces their wives to try to squeeze out the money owed to them while incurring huge legal costs, even after the divorce is over. Furthermore, some women have no choice but to risk their jobs by taking time off of work to sort through all of their financial and legal matters.