Husband Busted for Hiding $500K in Crypto During New York Divorce
Regardless of fluctuations in the overall market, many Americans have substantial assets invested in blockchain coins and other forms of cryptocurrency. This means that spouses going through a divorce and their attorneys must review whether any cryptocurrency is part of the divisible marital estate. Unlike other types of assets, crypto can be difficult to locate, and some husbands and wives have taken advantage of the secrecy in order to gain an unfair advantage during divorce proceedings.
One New York wife going through a divorce was somewhat familiar with cryptocurrency, but was confused when the assets reported by her husband did not seem to reflect his $3 million annual income. By calling in a forensic accountant, she discovered that her husband had a secret crypto wallet containing 12 coins with a total worth of approximately $500,000.
An NBC News poll showed that 20 percent of Americans have engaged in cryptocurrency transactions, with most of this activity involving people between the ages of 18 and 49. Accordingly, it is very possible that the asset division in your divorce will involve the crypto distribution. Even if you’re not well versed in currencies such as Bitcoin and Dogecoin or exchanges such as Binance and Coinbase, you should hire an attorney who understands how digital assets might be exploited in a contentious divorce.
Without a comprehensive regulatory structure governing cryptocurrency, your ability to learn about your spouse’s holdings might depend on the steps your lawyer takes during the discovery process. Accurate information on digital assets should be specifically requested, just like bank statements and other financial records. When warranted, your legal team should include a “crypto hunter” who can find hidden coins or assist your attorney in determining which exchange or exchanges should be subpoenaed.
Familiarity with crypto can be critical in a divorce even when one spouse is not trying to hide assets from the other. Valuations vary drastically and you should know the worth of what’s in any wallet at issue during your divorce. It’s also important to stay on top of any shifts in value that might occur while your marriage dissolution is pending.
As the Long Island divorce leader, Bryan L. Salamone & Associates, P.C. has handled various New York divorce cases involving cryptocurrency and other nontraditional assets. To speak with an attorney who will safeguard your financial interests when your marriage ends, please call 1.631.479.3839 or contact us online.