Divorce and Equitable Division of Hidden and Unknown Assets: Best Practices and Strategies

A live 90-minute CLE video webinar with interactive Q&A

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

1:00pm-2:30pm EDT, 10:00am-11:30am PDT

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE webinar will discuss best practices and strategies when counsel in an equitable division jurisdiction believes that all assets and property are not disclosed. The program will explain how to find veiled assets, "unknown" assets like frequent flyer miles or affinity benefits, when to involve a forensic accountant, what such a professional can and cannot accomplish, and how to weigh the costs against the potential benefits. The panel will also review the best options for counsel when it is counsel's client who is accused of hiding assets.


In a divorce, both spouses must affirmatively disclose all assets, income, and debt so that the marital property can be equitably divided. Sometimes one spouse hides assets or misrepresents the value of marital property in many ways and may have planned the divorce for some time.

Assets are generally secreted away, either by putting them into third parties' hands or by falsifying records. The exact methods of doing so are limited only by the spouse's creativity, who may involve unwitting third parties or convert cash into fungible assets hiding in plain sight. Looking but not finding undiclosed assets--whether depleted, never existed, or well secreted away--can become a quest that prevents the parties from moving on and have lasting consequences.

Locating unreported income and unknown assets is a difficult and costly endeavor, and the expense of investigation and recovery must always be weighed against the potential benefit. A forensic accountant can uncover cleverly concealed assets, but it is an excruciating and long process. If assets are found, they may be consumed with costs.

Listen as this panel explores how to identify the badges of fraud in the divorce, when to engage a forensic accountant, and best practices for managing the costs associated with such endeavors.



  1. Overview of equitable division
  2. Badges of fraud
  3. Benefits of using a forensic accountant
  4. Selecting the right accountant
  5. Formal discovery process to obtain information
  6. Informal discovery
  7. Avoiding illegal searches


The panel will review these and other issues:

  • What are the signs that a party has more assets than they are letting on?
  • At what point should a divorce attorney recommend a forensic accountant to their client?
  • Is this a cost-effective approach to divorce?
  • What is the risk a client loses more than he/she gains?


Ehrlich, Katie
Katie Ehrlich

Kessler & Solomiany

Ms. Ehrlich focuses on providing clients with an individualized approach to his or her family law needs. Prior to...  |  Read More

Rao, Anthony
Anthony Rao

Kessler & Solomiany


 |  Read More

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