Both parties will be expected not to sell, dispose of or conceal assets. Failure to do so, could have severe civil and criminal consequence. This is pursuant to the Automatic Temporary Restraining Orders that commence at the start of the case. Furthermore, they will have to sign repeated disclosure statements under penalty of perjury. These statements require repeated disclosure of the cash currently on hand. In addition, they could be asked about cash at the trial or in a deposition.
The cashcould be spent prior to the case starting, but this is risky. If it is a nominal amount, I would not worry about it. Hiding cash from the other party is risky and dishonest. Lying about it is suicidal.
One possible honest solution is that it certainly could be used for the divorce retainer or for the hiring of professionals (doctors, investigators, accountants etc), as that is a permissible use offunds, even after the filing of the case. I have never seen a judge order an attorney to release money paid to the attorney as a retainer to another party.
I would be hesitant to suggest this at an initial client meeting, as that would make me look greedy…..but it actually is not a bad idea.
By the middle or end of a highly contested cases, people are realizing that they can no longer afford to pay for things that they really need to win their case….like a trial! If they paid a retainer high enough to cover the trial and the experts needed to win the case, the attorney will hopefully do the right thing and take the case all the way to the end, and not drop them halfway through a major case for lack of funds.
Thomas Kendall is a partner in the law firm Kendall & Gkikas, LLP, Since 1994 have successfully fought for joint share parenting plans for fit parents. During and after the divorce process, Kendall and Gkikas, LLP has the in-depth knowledge it takes to help you make these positive adjustments to satisfy the court and for you to remain a major part of your children’s life.