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Anyone can start an offshore account

In the lead-up to your divorce, a family friend warns you that one of the more common ways that people try to hide assets is by putting them into offshore bank accounts. They then "forget" to disclose those assets, which don't show up on their traditional bank statements. The friend advises you to carefully look into all potential places where assets could be held so that you get your fair share.

However, you feel like it's not an issue in your marriage. An off-shore account sounds like something only an international traveler would really have. Your spouse has never left the United States. While you are fairly wealthy, you just don't think they fit that profile. Isn't it hard to start an offshore account?

It's actually not hard at all, especially in the modern era when you can do a lot of it online or over the phone. In many cases, it only takes a few hours. Almost anyone can do it. Your spouse probably doesn't even have to leave the house. They may also have opened up the account from work.

Don't assume they have to be a world traveler or fit any type of profile. If there are a lot of assets at stake, they may have moved some of those assets out of the country. It's a possibility you have to take seriously, especially if they have tried other ways to hide assets, as well.

As you work your way through this process, make sure you know what legal rights you have and what steps you can take to make sure property gets divided accurately.

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