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Question Hide money from wife

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Shlomo

New member
I have been estranged from my wife for several years: she lives in one country, and I live in another. I have a sum of money in a bank in a third country (EU), and she is aware of this bank account. In case she would like to divorce and get the money, I would like to protect it. A lawyer told me I should take out the money in cash, wait 3 months, and then file for a divorce. I cannot travel at the moment however, and I am looking for other suggestions how to make the money disappear beyond reach in case of a divorce.
 

Sols

Mentor Group Gold
Your lawyer sounds a little wacky, to be honest. I don't see how withdrawing the money into cash and waiting for three months would change the fact that you still own the money and that she's entitled to some of it in case of a divorce. Maybe there is some quirky local law, though.

The typical approach to this would be to move the money into something like a trust or foundation, thereby legally separating yourself from the money. The biggest caveat is you need to do so in good faith and not for the purpose of preventing a known event, i.e. you can't do it if have been served divorce papers or if you reasonably should have expected a divorce within a period of between one and three years prior to setting up the trust/foundation. The duration varies between jurisdictions and is called fraudulent conveyance.

Cook Islands, US, Samoa, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Mauritius, and Panama are all interesting and generally well understood jurisdictions for these types of arrangements.

Discuss your situation with fiduciaries to see what the duration of fraudulent conveyance would be in your circumstance. Also make sure you are compliant with local laws where you live.
 

bilderberger

New member
The bet idea is an interesting one. If you have any trusted acquaintances in the UK or another jurisdiction where winnings are tax free you could maybe arrange a bet through a betting exchange where he lays the bet and you take the bet and make sure you lose. He wins the money legally and tax free, and then can put it somewhere safe for you in a trust, or buy BTC or a stablecoin for you and park it in the Blockchain.
 

Shlomo

New member
The bet idea is an interesting one. If you have any trusted acquaintances in the UK or another jurisdiction where winnings are tax free you could maybe arrange a bet through a betting exchange where he lays the bet and you take the bet and make sure you lose. He wins the money legally and tax free, and then can put it somewhere safe for you in a trust, or buy BTC or a stablecoin for you and park it in the Blockchain.
I thought the gambling idea interesting too, but it seems very elaborate. I am not sure how to pull it off practically.
Your lawyer sounds a little wacky, to be honest. I don't see how withdrawing the money into cash and waiting for three months would change the fact that you still own the money and that she's entitled to some of it in case of a divorce. Maybe there is some quirky local law, though.

The typical approach to this would be to move the money into something like a trust or foundation, thereby legally separating yourself from the money. The biggest caveat is you need to do so in good faith and not for the purpose of preventing a known event, i.e. you can't do it if have been served divorce papers or if you reasonably should have expected a divorce within a period of between one and three years prior to setting up the trust/foundation. The duration varies between jurisdictions and is called fraudulent conveyance.

Cook Islands, US, Samoa, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Mauritius, and Panama are all interesting and generally well understood jurisdictions for these types of arrangements.

Discuss your situation with fiduciaries to see what the duration of fraudulent conveyance would be in your circumstance. Also make sure you are compliant with local laws where you live.
I think the whole thing sounds a bit questionable too, but I believe it might be like you say some local law. The lawyer insists it would work. Of course having a foundation would be better, but first off it is going to be expensive, and second I am not sure if it is possible to do everything necessary to create one during the pandemic.
 

Shlomo

New member
Not sure that would work, wife still own the money and probably leave a trace on the exchange.

Maybe gamble it and make it look it it was lost while playing.

What about a crypto mixer though? I never used one, but could it not work if say I bought crypto for the money, use a tumbler to transfer the crypto to the wallet of a relative, and then my story is that the money disappeared in a scam?
 

Martin Everson

Offshore Retiree
Mentor Group Gold
Elite Member
I have a family member who has been in this situation and best thing to do is just spend the money on a service offered by someone you trust and is unknown to your wife and collect it later. You want to spend it in a traceable way so your wife and her lawyer knows its spent. The last thing you want to do is simply take the money out and hide the money if your wife already knows about it. You need to show that the money has been spent in a non-recoverable way to avoid her lawyer requested you to present your banks records etc.

Also if you setup a trust it will be defeated if your wife challenges it as @Sols says as it was not established in good faith and there have been cases of challenges to such a trust successfully won by spouses. Most trust lawyer in channel islands will in fact will not setup a trust for you in this situation if they know its to avoid a pending legal case as they ask you this in the due diligence as I found out for a family member. And I would not advise lying either as the trustees will dissolve the trust if they get any hint of foul play in its establishment.
 

Sols

Mentor Group Gold
I think the whole thing sounds a bit questionable too, but I believe it might be like you say some local law. The lawyer insists it would work. Of course having a foundation would be better, but first off it is going to be expensive, and second I am not sure if it is possible to do everything necessary to create one during the pandemic.
If you can, get an opinion from a second and completely independent lawyer. There are odd laws here and there in the world, but if I were you I'd double or even triple check.

Of course having a foundation would be better, but first off it is going to be expensive, and second I am not sure if it is possible to do everything necessary to create one during the pandemic.
Foundations and trusts are expensive but they often cost less than losing whatever percentage an ex-spouse would be eligible for in case of a divorce, especially a hostile one where the spouse goes for the jugular. It's probably worth discussing with some service providers and understand the costs. But be very, very mindful of fraudulent conveyance. Only do this if you have several years ahead of you without any reasonable expectations of divorce. A trust/foundation/similar set up in bad faith or with malicious intent can be pierced, and often are.

If a trust/foundation solution isn't viable due to cost or timeline constraints, I'd suggest something along the lines of @Martin Everson. It's legal enough if you do it right. Depending on the size of the wealth, you may run into issues receiving the funds back so plan ahead, months/years ahead.

In case your situation permits, another option is to propose an amicable divorce and offer a nice, quick, clean break for some percentage of your wealth that you and a local lawyer/adviser determines to be fair and reasonable.
 

Shlomo

New member
I have a family member who has been in this situation and best thing to do is just spend the money on a service offered by someone you trust and is unknown to your wife and collect it later. You want to spend it in a traceable way so your wife and her lawyer knows its spent. The last thing you want to do is simply take the money out and hide the money if your wife already knows about it. You need to show that the money has been spent in a non-recoverable way to avoid her lawyer requested you to present your banks records etc.

Also if you setup a trust it will be defeated if your wife challenges it as @Sols says as it was not established in good faith and there have been cases of challenges to such a trust successfully won by spouses. Most trust lawyer in channel islands will in fact will not setup a trust for you in this situation if they know its to avoid a pending legal case as they ask you this in the due diligence as I found out for a family member. And I would not advise lying either as the trustees will dissolve the trust if they get any hint of foul play in its establishment.
I have read many of your posts on the forum, and you seem very knowledge. Your line of reasoning here also makes a lot of sense to me. I am wondering however if you could give some ideas for such services that I could "pay" for? What would work well in this regard?
 

Martin Everson

Offshore Retiree
Mentor Group Gold
Elite Member
am wondering however if you could give some ideas for such services that I could "pay" for? What would work well in this regard?

In my family members case. A long term family lawyer was used who sent over the course of some months more than a dozen invoices for services rendered and the account was drained to a reasonable figure. However this was in the Caribbean where this is normal.

You can however be creative and have a friend register a good sounding domain name for a couple of bucks and then buy the domain over a market place from him and hence transferring the money to him. The sale will have good supporting paperwork if done via a market place. Your wife can be free to keep the domain name in any settlement as it will have value right...lol.

i.e

 

Shlomo

New member
In my family members case. A long term family lawyer was used who sent over the course of some months more than a dozen invoices for services rendered and the account was drained to a reasonable figure. However this was in the Caribbean where this is normal.

You can however be creative and have a friend register a good sounding domain name for a couple of bucks and then buy the domain over a market place from him and hence transferring the money to him. The sale will have good supporting paperwork if done via a market place. Your wife can be free to keep the domain name in any settlement as it will have value right...lol.

i.e

It is a brilliant solution if it was not that my friend would have to pay a very high tax on it. I do not know anyone I trust somewhere where tax would not be required to be paid. I do not see a solution to this problem.

I am still considering whether crypto currency might be a solution, and I could buy crypto for it, use a tumbler, and then transfer the crypto to a hardware wallet? I am not comfortable with this solution however, I might add.
 

LondonOTC

Bitcoin OTC Dealer
Silver Member
BANNED MEMBER
It is a brilliant solution if it was not that my friend would have to pay a very high tax on it. I do not know anyone I trust somewhere where tax would not be required to be paid. I do not see a solution to this problem.

I am still considering whether crypto currency might be a solution, and I could buy crypto for it, use a tumbler, and then transfer the crypto to a hardware wallet? I am not comfortable with this solution however, I might add.
I have some friends that can invoice you for a consultancy fee as a lwayer and give some stablecoins back. Then you can sell it on paxful on a EMI like Transferwise under a New Mexico or Wyoming company
 

Martin Everson

Offshore Retiree
Mentor Group Gold
Elite Member
I am still considering whether crypto currency might be a solution, and I could buy crypto for it, use a tumbler, and then transfer the crypto to a hardware wallet? I am not comfortable with this solution however, I might add.

The problem is a divorce lawyer would just need to know that you have not spent but potentially concealed and retain ownership of the money in crypto form and that is enough for them to garnish what is owed from your future income etc via courts. It's best to clearly show the money has been spent with a third-party and not concealed and potentially in your control.

However I guess if your wife hires a very basic divorce lawyer they may not care to pursue cross border assets if there is very little chance of recovery. Hence you may be ok with just converting to crypto. However if asked the question - What happened to the money on the account? What would you answer?
 

CaptK

Nominee Company Bank Account Real Estate Passport
Mentor Group Gold
In my family members case. A long term family lawyer was used who sent over the course of some months more than a dozen invoices for services rendered and the account was drained to a reasonable figure. However this was in the Caribbean where this is normal.

You can however be creative and have a friend register a good sounding domain name for a couple of bucks and then buy the domain over a market place from him and hence transferring the money to him. The sale will have good supporting paperwork if done via a market place. Your wife can be free to keep the domain name in any settlement as it will have value right...lol.

i.e


@Martin Everson You are truly a source of inspiration.
I have a client in exactly the same issue and I have recently registered a few COVID related websites. I can sell one to him for 700K and even spend 5K making it look right. Then get him his coins and dump them in a cold wallet!. Completely justifiable as COVID is the hot topic right now.

@Shlomo this is your best option.
 

Shlomo

New member
The problem is a divorce lawyer would just need to know that you have not spent but potentially concealed and retain ownership of the money in crypto form and that is enough for them to garnish what is owed from your future income etc via courts. It's best to clearly show the money has been spent with a third-party and not concealed and potentially in your control.

However I guess if your wife hires a very basic divorce lawyer they may not care to pursue cross border assets if there is very little chance of recovery. Hence you may be ok with just converting to crypto. However if asked the question - What happened to the money on the account? What would you answer?
The scenario you say that she would just hire a very basic divorce lawyer is highly likely. The country where the bank is located, she has no connection to there, and I am not a resident there either.

Furthermore, she lives on the other side of the world. I think as such that you sya that simply converting to crypto might be a viable option.

Knowing the country where the bank is located, I highly doubt the courts would be very cooperating, unless huge resources are spent, and the courts are very slow and very difficult to navigate.

And to the other posters: even though it is not a huge sum of money, it is not a small sum of money either; however, the solutions suggested are either too complicated or require too much trust in strangers. I cannot put in so much effort as if it was some huge inheritance, but I cannot be so desperate either to trust in strangers and solutions I am not comfortable with due to my own lack of knowledge.
 

CaptK

Nominee Company Bank Account Real Estate Passport
Mentor Group Gold
We have said find someone you trust.
The fact you have stated the above means you have been sloppy somewhere.

So you need to look for a solution
 

Shlomo

New member
We have said find someone you trust.
The fact you have stated the above means you have been sloppy somewhere.

So you need to look for a solution
I messaged you on Telegram.

I would not mind other opinions though whether such an elaborate scheme is really needed? And maybe like Martin Everson said, I can just take a risk and buy stablecoins and put it into cold storage? If someone asks, I just say I was scammed in a crypto scam.
 

CaptK

Nominee Company Bank Account Real Estate Passport
Mentor Group Gold
if there were simple solutions, Jeff Bezos would have done...if not even the richest man in the world could escape from this, then accept the harm my friend
Bezos can't hide because there are too many people who hold his secrets. You could have cut s deal with his wife for 10% of whatever he can find.
 
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