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​Divorce Attorney Long Island Asks: Do You Think Your Spouse is Hiding Assets?

Divorce Attorney Long Island Hiding Assets

As a Divorce lawyer on Long Island, I see many clients enter my office and express the belief that their spouse is hiding or otherwise failing to disclose all of their assets. This feeling may be the result of something their spouse did or said or the simple fact that my client was aware of their spouse’s financial situation during the marriage and realize that what he or she is claiming now does not coincide. While this is an unsettling feeling for most individuals, the court system offers numerous remedies to help combat your spouse’s attempts to hide or otherwise fail to disclose assets.

Statement of Net Worth. In all Contested Divorces in Nassau County and Suffolk County, each party is required to fill out and submit to the court a Statement of Net Worth. If you are involved in an uncontested divorce, this form is not required, but it is certainly suggested. From a professional standpoint, I require every single divorce client o complete a Statement of Net Worth, whether or not their divorce is contested. The Statement of Net Worth will detail your finances, including your monthly expenses and monthly income, as well as your assets and liabilities. I am sure you are wondering what stops your spouse from lying on this form and therefore continuing to hide his or her assets. Well, the Statement of Net Worth is a sworn legal document, executed under oath before a notary public. Therefore, any individual who lies on their Statement of Net Worth is committing perjury, which is a crime in the State of New York. Misstatements of fact (lies) can be uncovered with the other tools in our arsenal, Discovery and Subpoena Duces Tecum.

Discovery. At times, a party’s Statement of Net Worth does not provide a clear enough picture of his or her finances. In these instances, the discovery tools permissible under New York’s Civil Practice Law and Rules are extremely useful. A Notice for Discovery and Inspection is the most valuable and tends to provide the most information. This request seeks copies of the opposing party’s banking records, credit card statements, mortgage documents, loan documents and any other financial information of which you may think. Most Notices for Discovery and Inspection request documentation dating back at least five (5) years from the date of commencement of the proceeding. If your matter is complicated financially, your attorney has the ability to request documents from a date of your choosing.

Subpoena Duces Tecum. Perhaps the most useful tool for determining the full extent of your spouse’s financial assets is the subpoena duces tecum. As an officer of the court, your Nassau County or Suffolk County divorce attorney has the authority to issue a subpoena to any banking or financial institution where your spouse may maintain a checking account, savings account, IRA, 401k or any other asset. Additionally, your Long Island divorce lawyer can subpoena your spouse’s current or previous employer to determine if he or she is entitled to receive any benefits as a result of said employment. Upon receipt of the subpoenaed records, your divorce attorney will have a complete picture of your spouse’s financial situation. Furthermore, your Long Island divorce attorney can compare the records received pursuant to any subpoena he or she may have served in your matter to your spouse’s Statement of Net Worth to ensure each and every bank account has been disclosed by your spouse.

A Divorce on Long Island is stressful enough without having to worry about whether or not your spouse is being truthful about his or her asset disclosure. Many couples that have been married for twenty (20) years or more have joint finances, so these issues may not seem prevalent if you fall into that category. If you maintain joint banking accounts, you both have access to the same, and naturally, are aware of the extent of your assets. However, the trend among newlyweds is to keep finances separate, and each agree to be responsible for certain marital bills and expenses. In these instances, you may not be fully aware of the extent of your spouse’s wealth and he or she may not be fully aware of yours. If your spouse’s lifestyle is inconsistent with his or her financial disclosure on the Statement of Net Worth, it is time to ask your Long Island divorce attorney to take the next step for you.

Living on Long Island? Receive a Free Divorce Attorney Consultation

For more information about how to protect your assets during your divorce in Nassau County of Suffolk County, contact an experienced Long Island divorce attorney. Long Island’s Hornberger Verbitsky, PC and his compassionate and experienced divorce lawyers can help. Call us at 631-923-1910 for a complimentary, confidential consultation or fill out the short form on this page and we’ll get right back to you

For more information about Property Division in your divorce, visit our Complete Guide to Dividing Property in Divorce.

Download our Free New York Divorce Guide

D-LI eBookCoverCTAsmOur 41-page “Guide to New York Divorce: What You Need to Know Before Hiring a Divorce Lawyer in New York” written by an experienced divorce lawyer Long Island’s Robert E. Hornberger, Esq., provides you with real information on the divorce process and the laws it rests upon in the state of New York. This book will help give you a solid foundation upon which you can begin the process of making your family’s, life better. Download your Free Guide to New York Divorce here.

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Melissa Rappa
Melissa Rappa
18:09 08 Feb 24
At one of the hardest and most stressful times of my life, it was so comforting to have a team at Hornberger and Verbitsky who ALWAYS responded in record speed to my questions, phone calls, emails or texts and who I felt really cared about helping me through this difficult time. It was a long few years and I am grateful to all of you. Thank you so much Rob, AnneMarie, Christine, Patty, Joan and Lawrence. Your guidance, professionalism and expertise is appreciated beyond measure.
Paul Carmichael
Paul Carmichael
16:21 11 Dec 23
I would give 6 stars if I could. I can't say enough good things about Robert and his firm. We were in a situation for over 2 years and I could have never made it through without Robert's experience and knowledge. He guided me through tough times when needed and his expertise could "read" the situation and make the next best move for me. He was tough when he needed to be tough (thankfully) and at the same time guided me through the process to make me feel comfortable in an uncomfortable situation. I would not want to go through this process without Robert and his team having my back. he helped move the case along and not waste any time or money. One last time, I 100% endorse Robert and his expertise.

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