Many people may think that hiding assets during a divorce is a common practice. Though it does happen, it’s not as common as you may think. There are very serious penalties that a divorcing spouse can face if it is discovered that they hid assets. Full disclosure of assets is a crucial step in any divorce, and it’s important for any spouse to know — and abide by — this concept.
With that in mind, you have probably heard of the rising popularity of Bitcoin in recent years. The electronic currency has gone through its ups and downs, but it has found some moderate legitimacy recently. Bitcoin isn’t backed by any nation, so the currency is mysterious and difficult to track. That makes it a perfect source for hiding assets in divorce, say many lawyers.
Since there are many spouses out there who will go to great lengths to ensure they get the better end of the deal during divorce, Bitcoin is an enticing option. Of course, this issue proves to be a double-sided coin (pardon the pun). Hiding assets can lead to allegations by the other spouse that there was not a full disclosure of assets — and that can spawn costly litigation that lasts many months or even years.
As with most divorce issues, it is important for the spouses involved to consider the ramifications of their actions during the divorce. They need experienced legal counsel to help them through some of the unique issues that their divorce will entail, may they involve a lack of full disclosure of assets or not.
Source: CNBC, “Bitcoin could be used to hide assets in divorces, warn lawyers,” Financial Times, Jane Croft, June 3, 2014