What happens if you discover after your final orders are given that your ex-spouse did not fully disclose his or her assets in their sworn financial statement?
Ryan Kalamaya explains how, depending on the timing, the court handles a lack of disclosure in a Colorado divorce.
Step by Step Colorado Divorce Guide
The initial thought of trying to file for divorce can be overwhelming and emotionally exhausting.
Ryan Kalamaya, one of the founding partners of innovative law firm Kalamaya | Goscha, has created a simple, step by step guide to the Colorado divorce process, so you know what to expect and how to best protect yourself and your assets.
Each 5-minute episode will cover the process for divorce, parenting in a divorce, property division, and more. To watch the videos of each episode, click here.
About Kalamaya | Goscha
Kalamaya | Goscha is an innovative law firm with an award-winning team of trial lawyers specializing in highly personal disputes — divorce, child custody, property division, maintenance/alimony, pre-marital and marital agreements, and collaborative divorce — in Colorado. If you have additional questions or would like to speak to one of our attorneys, give us a call at 970-429-5784 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DISCLAIMER: THE COMMENTARY AND OPINIONS ON THIS PODCAST IS FOR ENTERTAINMENT AND INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES AND NOT FOR THE PURPOSE OF PROVIDING LEGAL ADVICE. CONTACT AN ATTORNEY IN YOUR STATE OR AREA TO OBTAIN LEGAL ADVICE ON ANY OF THESE ISSUES.
Ryan Kalamaya (1s):
Welcome to Divorce at Altitude, a podcast on Colorado family law. I'm Ryan Kalamaya each week, along with my business partner and cohost Amy Goscha or an expert, we discuss a particular topic related divorce, or co-parenting in Colorado. In addition, we have created a short series of lessons that will take you through the legal process of divorce and answer your questions from simple to complex divorce. Isn't easy. The end of a marriage, especially when children are involved, brings a great deal of loss and change. We hope these practical tips and insights will help you on your journey to a new and better life.
Ryan Kalamaya (43s):
This is a how to episode on what happens when a party does not fully disclose their assets in a Colorado divorce. Now, as people know, we have a divorce story involving Eric and Melanie Wolfe. You also will recall that we have a whole season on divorce procedure that season one of the Divorce at Altitude podcast, how to series it's on our website. So you can check that out. And it really gets into the nuts and bolts of how Eric and Melanie are going to go through a divorce in Colorado. And specifically we addressed the duty of disclosure and what financial information needs to be disclosed between Eric and Melanie Wolf.
Ryan Kalamaya (1m 24s):
And I'll summarize that just for your convenience and under rule 16.2, Eric and Melanie owe a duty of disclosure to each other. And what the law requires is in a Colorado divorce, Eric and Melanie are going to exchange sworn financial statements that details their income, their expenses, their assets, and debts. And then they also need to provide backup documentation in connection with those financial disclosures. So that would be bank statements, tax returns, appraisals, various things that are required. So let's say that Eric provides his sworn financial statement to Melanie, and he does not disclose the, he has a Bitcoin collection or account, or that he has some sort of offshore account in the Caribbean.
Ryan Kalamaya (2m 12s):
And he does not disclose that what are Melanie's options if she later discovers it? Well, it depends on the time in which she determines that Eric has been less than forthright and less than candid in the divorce. She also needs to understand that the nondisclosure or misstatement relating to Eric's income is not generally going to matter. And that's pursuant to a case called in re marriage of daddy Otis. And in that case, there was a Greek gambling business that was not disclosed. And the complaining party said, well, I agreed to pay for maintenance and child support and I shouldn't have, and the court unfortunately denied that request.
Ryan Kalamaya (2m 56s):
So it really needs to the lack of disclosure or misstatement needs to get to property. The other thing I'll mention is that if Eric forgets to disclose, let's say a credit card statement or credit card account, or amount of money that he loaned from his college buddy, and he later discovers that, well, the court's not going to be too sympathetic. And he's generally going to be responsible for that, unless there's some sort of good reason why, but going back to our scenario of Melanie, what are her options in connection with a Bitcoin account? And let's say it's a million dollars of Bitcoin. Well, it depends on when she discovers it. If it's within six months of the court entering in the decree, then she can file a motion under rule 60.
Ryan Kalamaya (3m 44s):
She can claim that there was a mistake or she can claim that there was some sort of fraud. But if it's beyond the six months, she's going to have up to five years because under rule 16.2 E's sub-section 10, a court retains jurisdiction over a divorce in which there was a misstatement or omission that is material. So if Eric didn't disclose an account that had a hundred bucks in it, that's probably not going to be material. And it's probably not going to change the division of property. As I said before, a million dollars certainly is going to change any divorce agreement or trial. And the core is going to allow Melanie an opportunity to engage in discovery.
Ryan Kalamaya (4m 28s):
So how much is this Bitcoin account worth? When did he obtain it? How much is it worth insignificantly? The court in pursuant to a fairly recent case is going to value that account as of the date of the hearing on, and it could be a couple of years later, what happens if Eric has spent that money? Well, you know, you're going to be dealing with some really complex issues, but the important point is that Melanie has various methods or paths in order to get her million dollars or a portion of that million dollars. The court is not going to look very favorably on Eric. And one would expect that his best case scenario is to equally divide it.
Ryan Kalamaya (5m 12s):
So oftentimes what we do in as divorce lawyers is to make sure that if there is an agreement between Eric and Melanie, that all assets are fully discovered or disclosed in a divorce to make sure that there's no later claim of divorce, remorse, or something that allows a party to reopen a divorce, because some of the worst things that can happen, Divorce being one of them is to re litigate a divorce over again. Thanks for listening or watching this short lesson on the Divorce at Altitude podcast. If you found this helpful, please leave a review or share with a friend. It does help for others that are going through or thinking about a divorce in Colorado.
Ryan Kalamaya (5m 56s):
If you want to find out more information, please visit Kalamaya dot law or Divorce at Altitude dot com. That's K a L a M a Y a.law. Remember, this is educational information. It's not intended to be legal advice. Please consult with an attorney about the particulars of your case. We're happy to answer questions. Feel free to give us a call at (970) 315-2365.