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The Danger of Hiding Assets During Your Minnesota Divorce

In Minnesota, when a couple divorces, they must make a number of decisions, including how to arrange child custody, if spousal maintenance payments will be made and how to divide their assets. In the best situations, these matters can be settled between the couple without necessitating court intervention. However, often divorces can be highly contentious and couples will struggle in reaching agreements on these matters.

When a divorce becomes bitter, couples may sometimes jockey for financial advantage over the other. In extreme circumstances, this can involve one spouse actually hiding assets from the other that would otherwise be subject to the property division process. Hiding assets is considered a fraud upon the court and anyone who engages in this activity faces serious consequences if they are caught.

Because Minnesota is a state where marital property is divided under an equal distribution standard, divorcing couples must submit an inventory of their assets for a court to decide how they will be divided. A person looking to avoid this equitable split may try to transfer assets to friends or family, launder cash through his or her business, physically hide the assets or simply fail to disclose the existence of certain assets.

While this may be tempting to a person who does not think they should have to share the property with their ex or who simply want to punish that person, the risks far outweigh any potential benefits. If a person is caught hiding assets, a Minnesota judge can impose severe legal fees and court fines on that person. Additionally, a judge may void pre-existing prenuptial agreements and otherwise punish the spouse. The cost of hiding assets is often much higher than the value of those assets.

When going through a divorce, it’s important to secure reliable legal counsel. To discuss your options today, contact the skilled Minnesota divorce lawyers at Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A. in Minnesota.

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  • "Tori had a thorough understanding of my situation and made excellent recommendations to resolve my concerns. She was persistent on communication and handled everything in a very timely manner. I would definitely hire her again in the future if needed." - M.K.

  • "With Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A., it is like having a family physician. They are all knowledgeable, thorough, comforting, and the only call I need to make for all my legal needs for many years to come. No matter what the matter, I totally trust their advice and commitment to me and my family." - J.N.

  • "Mary from APH Law helped me thru a difficult divorce. She and the entire staff was there for me every step of the way helping me on what to do next. They listened to what I wanted and helped me achieve what matter the most to me in the divorce settlement." - Dana C.

  • "I chose APH after my initial consultation with Mary. I felt my best interest would be represented. The entire process went excellent, the attorneys and staff communicated effectively and efficiently with me throughout the process as they needed to. Being new to the legal process and verbiage, they walked me and talked me through the next steps and the jargon, I felt completely comfortable and represented. I hope I never have to use legal services again but if I do I will call Mary at APH Law and know that I will be taken care of." - Jeff M.

  • "Divorce is a time of emotion and stress. Mary Pfeifer , My lawyer was professional and compassionate. She was very informative through the process. Her insight helped me in my decisions. She worked hard to obtain a settlement which was fair to both parties. Though, I hope I won't need her help again. It is reassuring to know a good person that is willing to help." - Rod S.

  • "I first came to Ms. Jacquelyn Lutz of Appelhof, Pfeifer and Hart in October of 2016. It was definitely the worst time in my life and she compassionately spoke with me about my options. Ms. Lutz thoroughly explained the laws, statutes, process and what to expect going forward. What was supposed to be one case, turned into three intricate cases that took a huge toll on me and my family. Ms. Lutz represented me in court on all three cases with a vast knowledge of the laws and how to proceed accordingly. During all three cases she kept me informed, calm, gave me resources to utilize, and (most important) gave me a realistic view of what may come next. Ms. Lutz knew each case required a great deal of knowledge and creative thinking on how to legally proceed forward with each case. My family and friends are forever grateful for the amazing representation by Ms. Lutz. I highly recommend Ms. Lutz for anyone needing or considering superb representation for any kind of family law. " - M.H.

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