When it comes to divorce, one of the major hurdles many couples face is finding a way to divide the marital property. When they cannot come to an agreement among themselves, couples leave it to the courts to decide on the equitable distribution of property. This makes it important for your attorney to access a number of financial documents throughout the divorce process. This is particularly important in situations involving corporate ownership.
Mississippi is the only state in the union that awards property to the individual whose name is on the title. If both names are on the title to a house or car, for example, it is shared. If only one name is on the title, the property goes to that person. That being said, the court does have the ability and to divide assets that have been acquired both before and during the marriage in a way that is fair to both parties. An equitable division is not always an equal split.
Documents to be Considered
A number of financial records will need to be examined in the quest to create an equitable division. Some important documents include the following.
A CPA will want to examine bank records dating back for around five years. Whether looking into personal finances or corporate funds, looking at documents that cover this time span will give a good estimation of the long-term financial health of the individual and/or corporation.
It is essential to consider what the future looks like in terms of stock investments, retirement plans, and other company holding, and to share those future earnings.
Because taxes are filed under penalty of perjury, they can reveal information that might otherwise be difficult to discover. Interest from savings, gains or losses from investments, and interest paid on properties would all be noted on tax filings.
Results of Audits
These documents will expose the specifics of the financial status of individuals or businesses during a particular time setting. If your spouse is hoping to hide business or personal assets, previous audits will be a window into the financial status under consideration.
Bills and Receipts
In looking at credit card receipts, utility bills, and other documents, the court can assess the amount of disposable income there is.
When insurance policies are written to cover a particular dollar amount of assets, it is difficult for one party to make a claim that their assets are worth less. Who, after all, pays high premiums to insure items that are not in their possession? This is a good way to investigate whether or not one spouse owns things the other is unaware of, or that are more valuable than one spouse realizes.
A Fair Shake
At the office of Derek L. Hall, PC, our heavy hitting legal team is interested in providing our clients with a fair shake. In many cases, that may mean doing a deep dive into finances in order to know precisely what we’re dealing with. If you are considering a Mississippi divorce and have concerns about the potential outcomes to your pocketbook, contact our Jackson office for a free, confidential consultation today.