We recently read about a case where a woman’s ex-husband had started two successful businesses on top of his day job—an impressive feat. Allegedly, one of his LLCs alone brought in over $100,000 a year, but none of that income was known to the court. All the court knew about was the day job income, so the child support order remained unchanged.
This is a situation we’ve seen before—especially because it is relatively easy to hide business income from other family members (and the Massachusetts family law court). The first question is the obvious one: is the ex-wife entitled to a new child support agreement based on her husband’s new income?
In this case, our Massachusetts child support attorneys believe so.
When it comes to child support, a child is entitled to benefit from the increased income of both parents. Child support is the legal remedy to ensure that a child is not financially affected by a divorce—so if a child is not living with a newly-wealthy parent, they will still benefit from that parent’s good fortune (inasmuch as they would have if they lived with the parent).
That means if the father mentioned above really did have a massive income increase thanks to his LLC, then the ex-wife has grounds for a post-decree child support modification.
That leaves the next obvious question: how would she go about proving the income exists?
This isn’t simply a matter of the ex-husband getting a second job. LLCs are structured such that her ex could be receiving dividends from the earnings of the corporation, or his paying himself through payroll as an “employee” of the corporation. If he’s being paid through payroll, then it would be a little easier for a Massachusetts child support lawyer to prove increased income and sue for those wages.
However, the state of Massachusetts doesn’t garnish bank accounts, so if the father isn’t being paid with a paycheck, the mother will need to prove increased income with a forensic accountant. She’ll then to sue for the correct amount (depending on the accountant’s findings) in court, which will require a lawyer.
If you suspect your spouse is hiding income in order to pay less in child support, that’s not only illegal—it’s downright wrong. Your child deserves all the opportunities that both parents can afford. Our team employs forensic accountants (among other family and childcare experts) to retrieve all the evidence you case needs. Let us help your child get everything he or she deserves.
Call (508) 502-7002 or use our short online form to get a free consultation on your case.