What Are They and How They Can Help You

It is not unusual to discover during a divorce or after the death of a family member, that there are assets that have been hidden from the family. In some cases, such as divorce, one spouse may have tried to hide assets so they would not have to be shared. In other cases, some people feel very private about their net worth and hide assets so their family members do not think that they are “made of money.”

Secret Family Assets

Whatever the reason someone has chosen to hide their assets, an event like divorce or death has now made it necessary to recover these assets and distribute them accordingly. But how does one find these assets? After all, they are hidden.

Finding Hidden Family Assets

Most people who hide assets do so without realizing they leave clues. While they may be very diligent about not leaving a physical paper trail, there will be noticeable errors in their accounting practices. People that believe there are hidden assets during a divorce or after a death should hire a private investigator. Private investigators have accountants working for them who specialize in financial recovery. These trained individuals will find the hidden assets quickly because it is all in the numbers.

Bank Statements

Bank statements are a great way to find hidden assets or income. These statements will reveal income vs. deposits. Unaccounted for deposits often reveal income generated from another source. Spending habits can also lead you to undisclosed assets.

Tax Returns

Tax returns often reveal dividend payments, rental incomes, and other assets that may not be revealed in other ways. Business tax returns also can prove that income for the business is higher than what has been reported based on claimed expenses.

Personal Asset Investigations

Business Revenue

Sudden drops in revenue, especially in cash-heavy businesses, usually signal that money is being hidden. Unless there is a legitimate reason for the sudden drop in income, it is safe to assume that the business owner is trying to limit how much they claim.

Credit Card Statements

Spending habits are a great way to track hidden assets. Purchases of jewelry, art, land, and other investment items can be made discreetly by credit card. However, regardless of how discreet the purchase was, it always appears on the statement.

A qualified private investigator can track spending and saving habits that point to hidden assets. It is a fascinating process that usually results in family members or ex-spouses recovering much more than they expected.

If you believe there are hidden assets that you should be made aware of during a divorce or after the death, contact a private investigator and begin the inspection.

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Bruce Robertson

Bruce Robertson is a private investigator and founder of Tristar Investigation, California’s premiere detective agency. Bruce is also a media commentator for the investigation industry, featured in the New York Times, CNN, History Channel, MSNBC, Los Angeles Times and many more. You can find him on Google+ LinkedIn and YouTube.