California Family Law Firm Advises Against Hiding Lottery Assets From Your Spouse in a Divorce

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As a no fault divorce state, California has enacted laws governing divorce that have helped promote the settlement of cases and reduced court appearances and litigation costs. This includes stipulating that both parties in a divorce file at least one, but usually two, Declarations of Disclosure. The Declaration of Disclosure mandates both parties disclose all property they each hold, including their income and expenses for the previous 12 months by an agreed-upon deadline. Until both parties disclose to the other all their assets and liabilities, the court will withhold deciding on the case. In addition, if someone intentionally excludes an asset, the court can decide how to distribute that asset and oftentimes gives the entire asset to the other party.

When you get a divorce in California, one of the things you have to do is to file a Declaration of Disclosure

Deliberately hiding assets like lottery winnings from your spouse during a California divorce will cost you, according to California family law attorney Dennis Schuster, founder of Schuster Family Law.

"When you get a divorce in California, one of the things you have to do is to file a Declaration of Disclosure," said Schuster. "This document discloses all of the property you own and all of the income and expenses you've had for the past 12 months. If the court finds that you've deliberately failed to disclose an asset, the court can award the entire asset to your ex.

"I personally know of a case where a woman won $1.3 million in the lottery and deliberately failed to report it during her divorce. After the divorce was final, the husband found out about the lottery win and went to the court. The court awarded the entire $1.3 million to this woman's ex. If she had disclosed it in the Declaration of Disclosure during the divorce, she probably could have kept half of it. Instead she got nothing."

About Schuster Family Law:
Schuster Family Law is a California family law firm that does estate planning and handles divorce and adoption cases. Schuster is also developing a unique niche in representing parents whose children need special education. For more information, visit:


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