If you’re moving toward divorce and your spouse begins giving away assets, that is a giant red flag that you need to be looking for. It probably means that your spouse is attempting to keep you from getting the property you deserve in the divorce.
There are two basic ways that this happens. The goal is usually the same — to keep you from getting what you deserve — but the tactics can be slightly different.
Tactic No. 1: Hiding assets
First of all, your spouse could just be trying to hide those assets so that the total value of the estate seems much smaller. They do intend to keep the assets that they’re giving away. They’ve just found someone who will hold them until the divorce concludes, and then they have an arrangement with that person to give the assets back. If you were supposed to divide all of the financial assets during the divorce, this means that the assets being held by the third party were not divided, and your spouse got to keep 100%.
Tactic No. 2: Dissipating assets
The second tactic is simply the dissipation of assets or an active strategy to waste as much of the family’s money as possible. Your spouse knows that they’re not going to get those assets during property division. So they try to use them in advance, in a way that benefits them. For instance, your spouse could begin buying tickets to events or eating at fancy restaurants or going on trips and vacations. If that money is lost forever, they still get the benefits in the moment, and you get none of the money when your total marital assets get divided.
As you can see, property division can get very complicated, so it’s important to know about all of the legal options you have.