Serving Indiana Since 1994

Can I move or hide financial assets if I don’t trust my spouse?

On Behalf of | Sep 22, 2022 | Divorce

Couples argue about money all the time, especially if one person is a “spender” and the other is a “saver.” These arguments can build up with some couples to the point where they decide they are simply not compatible, and they want to divorce.

If you are facing divorce and you do not trust your spouse with your shared money, it is tempting to try to move, transfer or even hide assets. While you may do this out of a sense of protection and safety, is it legal?

The short answer is “no”

You may want to hide assets as a means of protecting them from being squandered by your spouse. While you have good intentions, this is generally a bad idea. You cannot hide, waste or otherwise keep your spouse from knowing the location of and having access to shared marital assets. This includes funds in bank accounts, stocks, mutual funds, retirement accounts and life insurance.

Marital assets in Indiana

Why are there rules against hiding assets in a divorce? It is because both spouses in Indiana have an ownership interest in all marital assets.

Marital assets include anything earned, purchased or obtained while married outside of gifts or inheritances granted to one spouse only. Property owned prior to the marriage that has not commingled with marital property is considered separate property and remains in the hands of the spouse who owns it.

Ultimately, if you are in the divorce process, you generally will not want to move bank accounts or otherwise transfer or hide financial assets. Whether you like it or not, if it is marital property, both you and your spouse have an ownership interest in it. It is better to try to protect these assets with sound legal advice during the property division process.