Many spouses who begin to suspect that their partner is hiding income at first wonder if they are being a bit paranoid. If you have noticed some of the typical red flags, chances are you’re onto something. As many as 7.2 million people in America have hidden accounts from their spouses or companions. Not everyone who hides assets does so in preparation for divorce, but whatever the case, you want to have accurate financial information.
If your spouse begins hiding financial records from you, this should serve as a warning. You should have full access to online account information, as well as statements and pay stubs. It is common for one person in the family to handle the bulk of the bills and other financial chores. When that crosses the line into secretiveness, however, you should be on notice.
Secret addresses, mail boxes or email accounts are also signs that there is something your spouse does not want you to see. If you notice that statements from certain accounts are not coming to your joint address anymore, this is a cause for concern.
Another warning sign is your spouse pressuring you to quickly sign documents that he or she does not let you read all the way through. Secretive spouses may wave a tax form or a power of attorney under your nose, telling you that it is just a formality and you need to sign it quickly and not make a fuss. Your spouse may try to make you feel stupid or nagging for wanting to peruse documents before signing. This is a tactic you should be extremely careful about.
Suspiciously decreased income
When your spouse tells you that his or her income has decreased dramatically, but does not offer specifics and does not let you see accounts or pay stubs, chances are she or he is channeling income into a secret account. Be especially on your guard if, along with the supposed decrease in income, your spouse shows no interest in spending less.
If your spouse wants to transfer joint assets to a third party for unclear reasons, not only may you be surrendering your assets, but your spouse may be implicating you in something potentially illegal. Do not agree to transfers or sign documents without completely understanding what is going on.
If you suspect that your spouse is hiding assets from you, you have several avenues to pursue in learning more and getting proof. Consult an experienced attorney about the best course of action.