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Finding Hidden Income and Assets

McCarter | East PLLC April 28, 2023

Hidden Assets Concept with Cash Hidden Under Puzzle BlockIn many cases of divorce, there is a significant lack of trust between the spouses. This can lead to arguments and disagreements over the details of the divorce. However, in some cases, one spouse may try to hide assets from the other with the intention of receiving a more favorable settlement. This is illegal, but it can be challenging to detect.

If you need assistance in uncovering concealed assets during your divorce proceedings, you can reach out to us at McCarter | East PLLC for legal guidance. Our primary office is situated in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, only a short distance away from the courthouse, and you can find us at 316 West Main Street. We also have a recently opened branch office in Manchester, Tennessee, where you can avail our services, and the address is 200 South Woodland Street.


A significant concern for couples undergoing a divorce is the division of their shared assets, which is governed by state-specific rules. If the couple mutually decides on a split, a judge will generally endorse it. However, if they are unable to reach an agreement, the court will have to intervene. In Tennessee, the division of assets is determined using the equitable distribution method, which aims to allocate the assets fairly, but not necessarily evenly. The judge will evaluate all jointly owned assets and the respective contributions and requirements of each spouse to determine a just distribution.


Once you begin working with a family law attorney during your divorce, they will assist you in identifying assets that are often concealed. These may include valuable antiques or artwork, cash held in travelers checks, accounts created in a child's name, unreported earnings, secret retirement or investment accounts, or assets or revenue held in a business or offshore account. Hidden assets can be a frequent issue in marriages where one spouse was the primary earner or solely responsible for managing the family finances. In such cases, the other spouse may not have access to certain accounts or a complete comprehension of the couple's combined wealth.


It can be a challenging task to uncover hidden assets while adhering to legal boundaries, even if you have suspicions about your spouse's secret income. This is where an experienced attorney can provide invaluable assistance, as they will ensure that you only employ legal methods to identify concealed assets and limit your search to areas that you have legal access to. To uncover the truth, your attorney will employ a process known as divorce discovery. This process allows your lawyer to ask your spouse targeted questions about your shared assets, which they are legally obliged to answer under oath. Lying while under oath is unlawful and can result in severe consequences such as fines and even imprisonment for contempt of court. In addition, a judge may order the deceptive spouse to cover your legal fees and split any uncovered assets. Attorneys have the authority to request legal access to specific documents or property for inspection. For instance, if valuable antiques are discovered to be owned by your spouse, your lawyer can demand that they be evaluated to determine their true value and guarantee that you receive an equitable portion. In cases where hidden assets are exposed, a judge can mandate that your spouse pays you a just share.


If you require assistance in uncovering hidden income or assets of your spouse, please contact us at McCarter | East PLLC located in either Murfreesboro or Manchester, Tennessee. Our firm is dedicated to offering every client professional, experienced, and aggressive representation.