The decision to file for divorce feels different for everyone. In some cases, it is a difficult decision that requires a lot of time and thought. In others, the realization that a marriage just is not working out is easy and obvious. Regardless of how you found yourself in divorce, there is one matter that will probably be difficult — property division.

Figuring out how to untangle marital assets is already overwhelming enough as is, but a deceptive ex can further complicate the matter. Hidden assets skew the picture of what is at stake and how much you are entitled to as you start your new life.

Do people really hide property?

Unfortunately, yes. This practice is especially common among those who had trust issues in their marriage, but the problem is not exclusive to them. Virtually anyone — including your soon-to-be ex — could decide that there are certain things he or she is not willing to even consider giving up in a divorce. In those cases, they often hide the assets.

Hiding assets is also easier than you might think. Sometimes, people simply deny that the asset ever existed in the first place. This can be extremely frustrating if you know that it did, but you are unsure of how to prove otherwise. Other methods include:

  • Creating fake debt
  • Pretending to lose the asset
  • Temporarily transferring property to another person

How can I find hidden assets?

There is no one right way to go about uncovering hidden assets, although virtually every method will leave behind some type of paper trail. If you are not sure where to start, red flags are usually easy to spot in tax documents. You will need to keep an eye out for discrepancies in income, deductions and capital losses and gains.

You should also consider creating a thorough list of all your marital assets as early on in the divorce process as possible. If possible, create this inventory before you ask your spouse for a divorce. If they were the one who brought up the possibility of divorce, make your inventory as soon as you can after that conversation.

Don’t lose out during property division

Splitting up marital assets is an important task that you should not take lightly. Getting your fair share is important for making sure that you have the most stable financial future possible. If your ex is hiding assets, you might not be able to secure the future that you need.

If you suspect that your ex is concealing certain marital assets, you should act in as timely a manner as possible. You do not have to do this alone, though. Kentucky family law can be a confusing labyrinth to navigate, so seeking help from an attorney who is experienced in property division can be helpful.