Compassionately Guiding Clients Through Divorce And Estate Planning

What is the dissipation of marital assets?

On Behalf of | Aug 14, 2023 | Divorce

During a divorce, it is possible that one spouse will not want to properly divide their assets with their ex. This will sometimes happen when the divorce is very contentious or when the reason for the divorce is something like infidelity.

In many instances, people will try to hide assets, perhaps by giving them to friends or simply claiming that they don’t exist. But there’s another tactic that people will sometimes use, known as the dissipation of marital assets. This is similar but different, it’s important to understand how it works.

Spending the assets in advance

When someone decides to dissipate marital assets, they may be aware that they can’t hide them effectively. Instead, they will just try to spend them so that they don’t have to divide them with their spouse.

For example, say that you and your spouse have $100,000. If it was divided equally, you would both get $50,000.

But then your spouse spends the months leading up to the divorce going on vacations around the world, staying in expensive hotels and perhaps even bringing a new partner that they’ve started dating since the two of you separated. By the time you end up in court, they have spent your $100,000 down to $50,000, and now they claim that you should only get $25,000 from the remaining total.

This is the reason that they chose to spend on things that can’t be refunded. They got to enjoy the benefits of spending those assets and traveling the world, attempting to prevent you from getting the portion you would have been allotted otherwise.

Fortunately, there are legal steps that you can take if you believe this has happened. Be sure you know exactly how to fight for the assets you really deserve.