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Wife finds out about secret high asset divorce

When one Arizona spouse is ready to end a marriage, that news often comes as a surprise to the other party. In an unusual case, a wife was surprised to learn not that her husband of 20 years wanted a divorce, but that he had already taken the steps to complete one -- just months after the pair married. She is now suing to have that divorce nullified, and to prevent her husband from selling one of their homes. The case may lead to a high asset divorce filing in this country, as well. 

The woman became suspicious when a tax bill arrived for one of the couple's homes but did not have her name on it. She hired an attorney to investigate, and he determined that the woman's husband presented foreign divorce papers to try and remove her name from the deed to the property. It is believed that he did so in an attempt to sell the home to his adult daughter.

The man has amassed considerable wealth, and it appears that he divorced his wife in order to try and shield those assets in the event that the couple might eventually move toward divorce. He filed in another country, where neither party resided. Neither showed up to any hearing in the matter, but the divorce still went through. As part of her case, the wife asserts that she never gave her consent, and that the foreign divorce is not legal because neither party was present and the proceeding was not published in a newspaper, as required by law.

One thing that remains unclear is whether the couple is now planning to complete a high asset divorce in the United States. The pair have raised a son, and the wife has stated that their partnership is one based in love, even though she is hurt by the knowledge that her husband had a secret divorce in the back of his mind during a marriage that has spanned two decades. As the matter moves forward, many in Arizona will follow the case to see whether the court in this country will accept the foreign divorce.

Source: New York Post, "Husband secretly divorced wife after wedding 'to protect assets'", Kathianne Boniello, Jan. 24, 2016

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