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Dissipation Of Assets In Divorce & How To Fight It

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Woman with piggy bankIn an ideal world, divorcing couples would be able to sit down with one another and separate amicably. Often, this is not the case. In particularly contentious divorces, greed, anger and spite can lead to vicious debates regarding assets. And sometimes, vindictive spouses will fight dirty to enact revenge on their exes. One such trick is known as dissipation of assets, and it can cause serious complications for one or both parties.

Dissipation of assets is a fancy legal way of saying that one spouse wasted marital assets to deprive the other party of those assets. For example, a husband decides to spend a significant amount of money on jewelry for a mistress. That money, in divorce, would be subject to equitable division between both parties, but because the husband dissipated those assets, the wife now faces financial struggles because of her husband’s malice.

Colorado offers some protection against this type of behavior in the form of the Automatic Temporary Restraining Order, or ATRO. This injunction helps prevent either party from disturbing the peace of another party, including prevention of dissipation of marital assets. While the ATRO is in effect, neither party can transfer, encumber, conceal or dispose of property without a court order or the other party’s consent.

Additionally, the services of an attorney can help you prove that dissipation occurred, which can help you fight for a fairer settlement. We can conduct interrogatories and request documents, financial releases and depositions to trace these dissipated assets.

Our Denver family law attorneys are ready to assist you in the process of asset division and protecting your assets from your spouse.