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What happens if you try to hide assets?

On Behalf of | May 28, 2020 | Family Law

Pennsylvania couples go through many difficulties during divorce. You do not know how your spouse may react in such a tense situation. Sometimes, you do not even know how you will react. A spouse may decide to lash out without thinking it through. An attempt at hiding assets may fall under this category.

But hiding assets is a big issue in divorce. Today, we will talk about the potential consequences of hiding assets.

What is a financial affidavit?

Forbes discusses the penalties for hiding assets during a divorce. First, it is important to discuss the financial affidavit everyone signs. During the divorce process, this affidavit is a declaration. It says you are telling the full truth about your assets to the best of your knowledge. This allows some wiggle room for genuine mistakes.

But what if a spouse gives the wrong numbers and it is intentional? In this case, this is an act of perjury. You are lying on an official legal document. Penalties for perjury differ from state to state. In some, you may have to pay a hefty fine. In others, you may face time in jail.

How judges handle asset hiding

The judge can also decide how to handle someone caught hiding assets. For example, there is an anecdotal case of a lottery winner. This person tried to hide this from their spouse during divorce. The court discovered this. The judge then ordered this person to give their entire winnings to their spouse.

In the end, attempting to hide assets is more trouble than it is worth. It is important for all parties seeking a split to understand this.