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Hidden Assets and Forensic Accounting

 Posted on April 07, 2017 in Division of Property

Lombard divorce attorneysThe practice of forensic accounting is based on the idea that careful analysis and investigation can reveal potential problems or concerns regarding the financial situation of the individual, business, or entity in question. Forensic accountants, for example, are employed by law enforcement agencies—including the FBI—to investigate white-collar crime. They may also play a role in divorce cases—especially when the couple’s finances are complex and hidden assets could present a problem.

The Problem of Hidden Assets

Illinois law requires the marital estate of a divorcing couple to be divided between spouses in a manner that is fair and equitable. The first step in dividing marital property is determining what assets the couple owns. If both spouses are not completely open and honest regarding their finances, determining the actual extent of the marital estate will be impossible. Too often, spouse will try to hide sources of revenue or even tangible assets during a divorce hoping to keep them from his or her soon-to-be ex-partner. Hidden assets may be a particular danger if one spouse maintains full control over the couple’s finances or if a spouse owns a business that could be used to cover deceptive behavior.

Using Forensic Accounting

As the title implies, a forensic accountant is a financial professional trained to look for problems or inconsistencies in a person’s economic situation. By carefully analyzing income records, tax returns, purchase receipts, revenues and expenditures, he or she will often be able to identify when a spouse is being deceptive, allowing you and your attorney to demand explanations for missing or extra money.

The circumstances of your marriage and divorce may dictate that the services of a forensic accountant are needed for your particular situation. While you and your attorney may be able to review standard household finances and investment records, a forensic account may be necessary if your spouse owns a company which offers him or her the opportunity to be more secretive about money or revenue sources.

Reliable Legal Representation

At A. Traub & Associates, we recognize the importance of putting together the right team of professionals to help you achieve a favorable outcome in your divorce. Contact one of our experienced Lombard family law attorneys to learn more about forensic accounting and how a forensic account may assist with your situation. Call 630-426-0196 for a confidential consultation at any one of our three convenient office locations.


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