If you and your soon-to-be spouse have been together for a long time, you may not even realize how many assets you have and how valuable they are. Most likely, you are not alone when it comes to this particular issue. Many people don’t have a clear understanding of where they stand financially, which is why hiring a forensic accountant may really make a big difference in your divorce. The forensic accountant can help you to ensure that you are aware of your assets so that you can protect them.
Forensic accountants with a good amount of experience in divorce matters are commonly hired either by you or by your divorce attorney. The accountant will do a thorough financial analysis, which will hopefully help your divorce to go smoothly. This is especially relevant (and useful) in divorces in which there are a great deal of valuable assets at stake.
Exactly what is forensic accounting?
After the other financial details have been worked out in a divorce, such as monthly expenses for various things, the accountant will look into financial records and will do an audit if they think that it is necessary. Typically, the accountant will look into the finances of both spouses, examine bank account(s) and credit card statements and determine if the two spouses have written off anything major.
The forensic accountant will probably also look at public records, including property deeds. If one of the spouses is trying to hide something, they might transfer some of their property to another member of the family or a close friend with the plan to reclaim the property after the divorce is final. If one or both spouses owns a business, the accountant will search financial statements at the Secretary of State’s office, where the records are retained for five years.
Is it worth your hiring a forensic accountant?
If you are in the middle of your high-asset divorce and you suspect that your spouse is hiding assets, a forensic accountant may prove to be valuable. It may be a good way to level the playing field. After all, full disclosure from everyone concerned is the only way that things will turn out to be fair. If you feel that working with a forensic accountant will make your divorce agreement turn out to be more fair and even, it may be worth hiring one so that you have peace of mind going forward and your divorce agreement is one that you can live with without regrets.