In some divorce cases, a spouse may attempt to hide assets or engage in fraudulent activities to gain an unfair advantage during the division of property. Detecting signs of financial fraud is crucial to ensure a fair and equitable outcome.
Ron Anfuso is a Los Angeles Divorce Forensic Accountant who can help uncover situations of financial fraud. In this blog post, we will explore common signs of financial fraud in divorce cases, all of which Ron is experienced in uncovering.
- Unexplained Changes in Spending and Saving Patterns: One red flag that may indicate financial fraud is a sudden and unexplained change in a spouse’s spending and saving habits. If you have had a consistent lifestyle and clear patterns of income, expenditures, and savings, any noticeable deviation from these patterns could signal hidden assets or financial misconduct.
- Cryptocurrency Investments: The rise of cryptocurrencies has provided a new avenue to conceal assets. Due to their decentralized nature and potential anonymity, cryptocurrencies can be challenging to trace. However, if one spouse shows a significant decrease in available funds without a reasonable explanation, they may have invested in cryptocurrencies and transferred funds to digital wallets, making it difficult to uncover their financial activities.
- Offshore Accounts in Non-Cooperative Jurisdictions: Certain jurisdictions, such as Grand Cayman or Panama, may offer secrecy and limited financial disclosure requirements. If one spouse has opened offshore accounts in non-cooperative jurisdictions where financial information is not readily shared with other countries, it could be an indication of an attempt to hide assets or engage in financial fraud.
- Non-Disclosure of Windfalls or Lottery Winnings: Failure to disclose significant windfalls, such as lottery winnings or unexpected large sums of money, is another form of financial fraud. If one spouse intentionally concealed substantial financial gains prior to legal separation, they deprived the other party of their fair share of the assets.
- Misuse of Community Property Funds: California is a community property state and misappropriation of community property funds can be considered fraudulent. For example, if one spouse spends money to set up a boyfriend or girlfriend in an apartment, lease a car, or engage in other non-community property uses without the other spouse’s knowledge, it constitutes financial fraud. The innocent spouse may be entitled to reimbursement for such expenditures.
Financial fraud during divorce proceedings can significantly impact the equitable distribution of assets. It is crucial to be aware of the signs and take appropriate measures to uncover any fraudulent activities. If you suspect financial fraud, consulting with a forensic accountant specializing in divorce cases can help you gather evidence and protect your rights. By staying vigilant and addressing any suspicions promptly, you can ensure a fair and just resolution in your divorce settlement.
Should you have questions concerning the subject of fraud in divorce cases, you are welcome to contact Ron Anfuso at email@example.com or to schedule a consultation call (310) 378-6606. Our office is located at 28441 Highridge Rd., Suite 110, Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274.
This article was originally posted on Collaborative Divorce California’s website.