Couples going through a divorce in Massachusetts have a lot to consider and agree upon. While you may want to believe your spouse is being truthful and straightforward about his or her assets, it is in your best interest to do some extra digging and make sure nothing is being hidden and held back from you.
The Georgia Bar Association recommends that a forensic accountant becomes part of the team to look for hidden property and other assets. These professionals are experts in this technical and specialized area. The accountants apply an advanced methodology to find changes in trends related to financial transactions. They also know how to perform more advanced internet searches and financial analyses of bank statements and tax returns.
While a forensic accountant or investigator is often worth the money, the Huffington Post discusses how you can investigate on your own if you do not have the funds to hire an expert. Go over paystubs and compare them to bank statements to make sure they match up. Also compare paid bills to bank statements. If they do not show up, there is more than likely another account you are unaware of. Use bank and credit card statements to look for asset expenses, such as artwork or jewelry, that have not been disclosed.
Tax returns can give a lot of information. Income generated from real estate, investment gains and foreign accounts must be legally disclosed so you should be able to see them on the return. You should also subpoena the employer for information about benefits such as retirement accounts and stock options.
Finally, if you suspect your spouse is hiding something, call him or her to the stand. As lying under oath results in serious repercussions, he or she may be more willing to be truthful about what you ask.