How to trace assets in high-asset divorces

On Behalf of | Aug 30, 2023 | Blog, Family Law

One of the challenges in a high-asset divorce is untangling financial details. Complex assets and hidden ones are some of the issues.

Asset tracing is similar to detective work, as it involves thorough and careful investigation, and it often involves numerous professionals. This procedure enables the parties involved to identify and document assets within a marriage to gain a clearer understanding of the marital estate and ensure a fairer distribution of assets. This task becomes particularly significant when one or both partners suspect that the other might be hiding assets or manipulating their financial situation.

Trace the paper trail

One method commonly used in asset tracing involves following the paper trail of financial records. This includes examining bank statements, tax returns, investment records and other financial documents. This method can identify discrepancies, hidden accounts and irregular financial activities.

Search for digital footprints

Digital forensics is now a significant aspect of asset tracing. Digital footprints, such as email communications, electronic payment records and online transactions, can provide valuable insights into hidden assets or financial moves.

Examine tangible assets

Tangible assets, including real estate properties, vehicles and valuable personal belongings, can also be subject to asset tracing. One partner might transfer, sell or re-title an asset to cover up its ownership. Investigating property records and ownership transfers helps ensure that there is a proper account of all marital assets.

The importance of expert involvement

According to CNBC, around 20% of individuals, which are mostly men, use or invest in cryptocurrency, which makes it even more difficult to trace assets. As a result, Forbes recommends specialists in forensic accounting, digital forensics and financial investigation play an important role in uncovering unknown assets.

Asset tracing can be an important aspect of high-asset divorces. The thorough examination of everything related to assets, coupled with the expertise of professionals in the field, contributes to financial transparency.