FAMILY LAW ARTICLES
The most common way people earn an income is through an employer who provides them with a W-2 at the end of the year. Employee pay stubs are straightforward to deal with when determining support because they list wages, bonuses, tax deductions, and voluntary benefit deductions. Typical examples of voluntary deductions include health insurance and an employer-sponsored retirement savings account. Pay stubs show sick leave and vacation time as well.
Common Issues with Using Pay Stubs and W-2 Forms for Discovery
The problem arises when one party attempts to hide their income or the attorney cannot decipher the pay stub correctly. Our attorneys will need to subpoena the employer’s handbook when pay stubs or a W-2 form do not provide us with the information we need.
Our years of experience tell us that some people will go to any length to hide their actual income and assets. We have received pay stubs for discovery with numbers that someone obviously adjusted manually or lines whited out entirely.
At Hartley Lamas et al., Attorneys at Law, we scrutinize all documents we receive for discovery on a 40-inch computer screen. The availability of these large-screen computers makes it possible for us to see tiny discrepancies we may not have noticed in the past, such as show lines. We can also determine if the pay stub had a post-it note on it at one time. This is common when clients and attorneys are discussing how to present evidence of income. We see removed digits and changed digits most often.
How We Proceed After Discovering Pay Stub Fraud
Falsifying income information in a support case is perjury, and we let the opposing party know right away that we have uncovered it. We then send a subpoena to the employer to get the actual unedited pay stubs or a spreadsheet depicting accurate pay. Once we have that proof in hand, the party who falsified income reports typically agrees to our demands. If they do not, we demonstrate evidence of their perjury in court.
Request a Legal Consultation with Hartley Lamas Today
Are you facing a battle for child support, alimony, or another type of financial support? Our law firm is here to help. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us to request your initial consultation today.