People are naturally stingy with money, and when you have someone who is overly protective of their private wealth, you would be surprised at some of the tactics I have seen that some go through in a desperate attempt to keep what is theirs. This is especially true when it comes time for couples to begin the divorce process, which includes the separation and distribution of money and property. I have seen every stunt pulled by wildly greedy spouses, desperate to keep every last dime in their procession, and hidden far and away from the court, their spouse’s attorneys, and sometimes even their own attorney. With that being said, I have narrowed this long list down to the three most common and, to be frank, the most successful tactics used to hide personal assets in anticipation of the divorce proceedings.

One popular move is transfer their assets to a separate account:  Generally speaking, the transfer is from the joint bank accounts, and any brokerage account, where both spouses have been depositing money, and into a solely owned bank account, under only one of the parties’ names, and often these transfers happen very quickly, because if one of the spouses are engaged in this, why wouldn’t the other be? This fraudulent act has had scattered success, especially when that separate account could possibly be an off-shore account.

Another popular method is to create fake expenses, and use them as excuses as to why they “don’t have the funds” to cover legal fees, or pay some type of support. It isn’t terribly hard either, especially if they have accomplices to help sell the story of where there money went, and more importantly, why you can’t have any or see it.

Lastly, and this one is really conniving, is if they take out cash withdrawals from a debit card. At almost any store you shop, after swiping the debit card, and then entering the pin and so forth, you will often be asked if you want cash back. Most of us answer no, because we want that money to stay in the debit account. However, your spouse can just get groceries, but also withdraw amounts up to $80. Overtime, this could build up very quickly, and it would never be noticed because on the billing statement it will just say the store and items purchased, leaving no trace of the cash withdrawal. It is all just shown as part of the groceries. Pretty clever, huh