Many spouses find themselves at loggerheads during the asset division part of their divorce. The truth is that, no matter how well-intentioned they may be at the beginning of the process, spouses usually struggle to find a division of marital assets that feels fair. And it is not just couples who insist on fairness in their divorce; Illinois law requires assets to be divided equitably.
Although frustration or anger during the asset division process may make spouses want to conceal assets from each other, doing so can carry serious consequences. If you are getting divorced and have considered hiding your assets, think again. Here are three major consequences that could be faced by someone who hides assets before or during a divorce.
Contempt of Court and Perjury
If a spouse is in a deposition and lies about property ownership in front of a judge, the spouse can face several charges. Lying in court is called “perjury,” which is a punishable crime. A judge may also find the spouse to be in criminal contempt of court for impeding or obstructing the court, which in serious cases can result in criminal charges and a trial. If someone has been accused of hiding assets and they refuse to testify in court, they may also be held in contempt. Criminal convictions will be placed on a spouse’s criminal record....