If you were a person who invested $80 in Bitcoin in the year 2010, do you think you would have imagined those 1,000 bitcoins being worth $50 million today? And if you were a spouse to someone who spent $80 on Bitcoin during your marriage, would you want your fair share? What if your spouse never told you?
Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are difficult to track without the right know-how. Thanks to their cloud-based, blockchain protections, it might be all but impossible to seize this kind of runaway investment without a person’s blockchain wallet information.
Cryptocurrency as marital property
The simple truth is that cryptocurrency is a type of currency—it is an asset. And according to Bankrate, more and more divorce cases involving high-value disputes over it. So long as someone has proof that his or her spouse has bitcoin assets, courts may be able to order them split up according to state law.
Cryptocurrency as a hiding mechanism
These encrypted assets go unregulated and, depending on how transactions happen between accounts, they might leave minimal trace. The more someone knows about crypto, the harder it may be to reveal assets to the court.
When people go out of their way to hide their assets through cryptocurrency though, it is still as illegal as hiding assets in any other fashion. If a spouse signs a financial affidavit regarding all his or her marital assets and a forensic accountant uncovers hidden crypto assets, that spouse is in contempt of court. Authorities may charge them with perjury and all the penalties that follow.
In this age of digitally-encrypted asset management, it still comes down to keen investigation and diligence for spouses to get their rightful split out of a divorce.