Cryptocurrency is a peer-to-peer digital payment system that allows anyone to send and receive payments. There are several different versions such as Bitcoin and Ethereum which run on a distributed public ledger called blockchain. The blockchain is the record of all of the transactions updated and held by currency holders. An estimated 20 million Americans own some form of cryptocurrency. A CNBC article published by Kate Dore took an in depth look at the rise in cryptocurrency and the potential for it’s use in hiding assets in divorce cases.
Whenever a divorce case is initiated both sides will use the civil discovery process to obtain information from the other party related to their financial assets. The financial records are critically important because they are used to determine how much child support a spouse owes, potential alimony owed to a spouse and are key factors in the equitable division of assets. Divorce attorneys are often in the position of compelling the other party to produce an accurate picture of their financial state. Needless to say, if there is way to conceal one’s financial picture in an effort to reduce future liability to a soon to be ex-spouse it is likely to be exploited.
In the case where a spouse has reason to believe that there may be amounts of hidden cryptocurrency an attorney may file a subpoena to get access to computers and other electronic devises that may store said information. Other methods deployed by divorce attorneys in order to track down hidden assets are:
- Utilizing forensic experts to search for electronically stored information such as ticker symbols and log on credentials.
- Searching for exchange activity on bank statements
- Witness testimony
- Private investigators
It is recommended that the spouse of lesser financial means put a plan in place to handle these complications prior to filing for divorce. It is much easier to obtain documents that may be in the residence to assist with your divorce case prior to actually filing suit. Our clients typically do not make a decision to file for divorce overnight. Divorce cases like any other legal matter takes planning in order to be successful. That should always begin with gathering documents that will make it easier for your attorney to investigate your case and locate all marital assets in the household. The Faucette Law Firm handles all matters related to divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and modifications in the Douglasville and Atlanta area. Contact our firm today for a consultation.