The Law Firm of Yolanda V. Torres, APLC

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Be on guard for financial foul-play in divorce

Did you ever imagine you'd one day be looking at the person you married as an opposition to your goals? Going through divorce is never easy, and any sort of less-than-ethical behavior from a soon-to-be former spouse is enough to cause tremendous stress and significant delays in the process. If you also happen to suspect that things don't seem quite right where finances and assets are concerned, it can make an already difficult situation all-the-more challenging.

In California and everywhere else in the United States, it's illegal to hide assets from a spouse in divorce. There are many ways to do this and some are not always immediately apparent. By learning how to spot signs of financial foul play, you might be better equipped to protect your own interests and obtain a fair and agreeable settlement.

Have you noticed these red flags?

Once you decide to go through with divorce (especially if there are children involved) one of your priorities is likely to be minimizing the potential negative effects of the situation. As you begin to set new goals and plan for a future that does not include your current spouse, you might want to be on the lookout for signs of trouble that include one or more of the following:

  • If your spouse has suddenly issued several loans to family members, children or friends, you might want to investigate the matter further. Many people hiding assets use this as a means to store funds away until after the finalization of their divorces.
  • If there's been a sudden disappearance of commission or incentive bonus monies in your spouse's paycheck, you might want to inquire as to whether a portion of his or her salary has been deferred for future distribution (another way to hide assets).
  • If you and your spouse own a business that has suddenly decreased in value, it might be cause for concern. Those hiding assets often find ways to do so through business, such as "hiring" and "paying" new employees who don't really exist or not signing new clients until after the divorce is final.

There are other clues that hidden assets may exist, such as if your spouse has grown aggressive and defensive regarding money matters or has opened new accounts that don't include your name. Such situations often complicate the divorce process.

Hidden assets are a big problem in many California divorces. Aside from the fact that it's illegal, it's unfair for you to start over in life without appropriate funds to maximize your chances for success. You've worked long and hard to get where you are today and you deserve to have your rights and interests protected as you seek agreeable solutions to unresolved financial issues in divorce. An experienced family law attorney is prepared to help you overcome any obstacles that arise.

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The Law Firm of Yolanda V. Torres, APLC
601 N. Parkcenter Drive
Santa Ana, CA 92705
Phone: (657) 210-0691 
Fax: (714) 242-7416
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The Law Firm of Yolanda V. Torres, APLC
7755 Center Avenue
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Huntington Beach, CA 92647
Phone: (657) 210-0691 
Fax: (714) 242-7416
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