Family Law

Family Law News Issue 4, 2014, Volume 36, No. 4

Disclosure Requirements for Offshore Assets in Divorce

Steve S. Zand

Steve Zand is a Certified family Law Specialist and a full-time Professor of Law atUniversity of West Los Angeles, College of Law. He was appointed to the Los Angeles Police Department, Police Commission, as the Chairperson ofthe Permit Review Panel in 2001, and served until 2006. He is the recipient of the Justice Bernard Jefferson Award of Excellence. He has received Commendations from the Governor of the State of California, Board of Supervisors of County of Los Angeles, Mayor of City of Los Angeles, and Speaker of the California State Assembly. He is also selected as a Super Lawyer.

Family law attorneys representing clients who are divorcing and who have offshore income and assets need to be well versed in the disclosure requirements of the federal tax code as well as California’s Family Code. Attorneys and clients who are unaware of these disclosure rules run the risk of incurring hefty criminal and civil fines and even jail time. The duty to disclose assets in dissolution proceedings, juxtaposed with the civil and criminal penalties for failing to disclose offshore assets to the IRS, creates a legal mine field for unwary lawyers and their clients. The disclosure duties in divorce compel parties to deal with any previous failure to report offshore assets and income to the IRS.

Misconceptions of Disclosure and Offshore Assets

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