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Do you need a financial expert to be present at a divorce trail for evaluation of assets or just a written evaluation is enough?

Burbank, CA |

When I was out of the country my ex-wife emptied out our joint safe deposit box and under oath testified that I was the one who did it. I was lucky because my passport shows that I was In Europe on the date that the safe deposit box was emptied and closed. Later on during a deposition after she was presented with documents from the bank with her signature on them she had no choice but to admit that she was the last person who accessed the assets in the box and closed the safe deposit box. In her Declaration of Disclosure she has under-exaggerated the value of assets in her possession (Gold). I have a list of items and pictures of some of the valuables in question. Do I need to have a gold expert testify or can I just have the pictures evaluated and have a written estimated value?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Best answer

    A jewelry story owner or long time employee would likely qualify to testify at the trial re value of gold. I don't think you need some high-priced gold expert. Some counties also the parties to stipulate to trial by declaration (despite Elkins). IF you wife has agreed to this, you could have the expert do his testimony by declaration (written) and he would just have to show up at trial if wife wanted to cross examine him. If you prove at trial that she tried to scam you out of jewelry in box, the court can award you 100% of the value and order her to pay your fees. Given how badly you exposed her in the depo, I would think that her and her attorney would want to settle and not go to trial.


  2. At trial, you will need testimony of witnesses - you can't submit Declararations if witnesses for trial. You would best retain an experienced Family Law Attorney to advise and represent you in your divorce.

    Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on, as each situation is fact specific, and it is not possible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and court pleadings filed in the case. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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