Asset Investigation

Financial issues involved in a divorce – especially high net worth cases – can often become quite complicated. Obscuring, hiding, obfuscating, veiling or concealing income and assets, these are the various terms to describe activities of one spouse preventing access by the other to cash, real, personal or business property. This can present a major challenge in financial proceedings for the party who has no control over the family business or finances. Particularly so if the other party commenced taking pre-emptive action in anticipation of a divorce long before proceedings are set in motion.

The many methods used by spouses to hide assets range from depositing funds into the bank accounts of relatives or simply withdrawing cash to setting up sophisticated trust schemes and sending money offshore into untraceable accounts.

I assist clients with the appropriate property checks and investigation of business activities in Russia to facilitate the best possible outcome in their property proceedings whether in Russia or in other jurisdictions. My services include but not limited to the following.

Business Reports 

  • Registration history of a company (including names of directors, shareholders, officers or principals etc.)
  • History of forming, name change and reorganisation

Companies and Sole Traders 

  • Extracts from the State Companies Register (incl. names of directors, shareholders, officers or principals etc.)
  • Extracts from the State Sole Traders Register
  • Extracts from the State Property Register
  • Company Annual Balance Sheets


  • Shareholding activity of an individual
  • Extracts from the State Property Register on individual’s rights

Real Estate 

  • Title searches


In some complex cases of withholding assets it is recommended to hire forensic auditors to study investments, income tax returns and corporate tax returns. However, such asset investigations can be expensive. A word of advice:  keep enquiries in proportion to the likely eventualities. The cost of any discovery work should be carefully weighed against the potential benefits.

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