Seven Ways to Catch Your Spouse Lying About Their Income or Assets

If your spouse is lying about their income or assets, there are several ways to handle such a situation.

It is important to note that if your spouse obtains a W-2 or is “on the books”, it is almost impossible for them to lie about their income.  However, if their employer does not claim all of the income that your spouse earns on their W-2, then it would be easier for them to lie about their total income.

In contrast, if your spouse is self-employed, owns their own business, is involved in the so-called “gig” economy, receives tips and/or just receives a 1099, then the ability to lie about their income is much greater.

Here are Seven Things you can do, to find out if your spouse is lying on their income or their assets:

  1. Analyze and Review Their Statement of Net Worth. In a contested divorce, each spouse usually has to complete a Statement of Net Worth. This document is similar to a Budget, and the Spouse will list their Income, Assets and Expenses.  You and your attorney can analyze the Statement of Net Worth to see if it makes sense or if it contains incorrect information.  In some situations, you can determine your spouse’s income by looking at their expenses.  Typically, you need at least as much income to pay your expenses.
  2. Analyze and Review Their Bank Account Statements. By reviewing your spouse’s bank account statements, you can determine if they have periodic or regular deposits, which may represent income.  You may also be able to determine their expenses.
  3. Consider their Business Expenses. If your spouse owns a business, the business will have expenses that can be analyzed.  Most businesses pay rent, electric and heating bills.  Other businesses may have expenses unique to what they offer, for example: a restaurant must pay for their food supplies, a hotel/motel must pay for laundry.  From these business expenses, a trained expert can extrapolate what the business is actually earning.
  4. Use an Experienced Forensic Accounting Firm. There are many firms who specialize in determining what a business earns and what it pays their employees, including your spouse.
  5. Depositions. In most contested divorces, you and your attorney can conduct a deposition of your spouse.  A deposition is where you or your attorney poses questions to your spouse.  Your spouse must answer the questions, under oath.  The deposition is recorded and can be used at trial.  If your spouse answers a question one way at a deposition, and then a different way at trial, then one of the answers must be false.
  6. Finding Hidden Assets. Most assets are hard to hide.  In addition, while you were married, you probably knew about most of your spouse’s assets.  However, sometimes there are assets that you may not know about and that your spouse is trying to hide from you.  The first place to look is at your spouse’s last few years of income tax returns.  There are also firms that will conduct asset searches.
  7. Lying about the Value of an Asset. Instead of trying to hide an asset, your spouse may lie about the value of the asset.  This is typically easier to “catch” your spouse in a lie.  Virtually every asset can be assessed for its value, there is an expert in almost every field that can determine what that the value of an asset is or should be.

Unfortunately, lying can be common in a divorce.  However, there are many strategies that you and your divorce attorney can use to catch your spouse in their lies.

If you are seeking a divorce and you suspect that your spouse will lie about their income or assets, then call or contact David Badanes and the Badanes Law Office, P.C.  David Badanes has represented and helped numerous clients who are seeking a divorce where one spouse tried to lie about their income or about their assets.  David Badanes know what strategies to use to determine if your spouse is lying.

To contact David Badanes and the Badanes Law Office, call 631-239-1702, email: or visit their web site at  The Badanes Law Office has offices in Northport, Suffolk County and in Uniondale, Nassau County.

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