The Daily Telegraph reported on the increasing frequency with which social media, including Facebook and Twitter is used in legal cases to find hidden assets. The paper explained how the court is now able to make disclosure orders requiring people to produce details of their social media activities.
The information and photographs posted to such sites can often be used to trace illicit and hidden cash. The paper revealed how Facebook had been used to show links between people in a personal injury claims scam, and explained how extravagance on social media can evidence hidden wealth when a party is otherwise claiming poverty in proceedings.
Vardags president, Ayesha Vardag, commented that as well as social media, people are using electronic currencies such as Bitcoin to hide assets. “They can be used to run a parallel economy. People will go to immense lengths as a spousal claims is more damaging than tax because it is half your wealth,” she explained.
Ayesha also explained the risk of Bitcoins and parallel currencies being used to a number of other news outlets. Her comments were featured by CNBC and the Financial Times, which revealed that court orders requiring the disclosure of Bitcoins had already been required in the US courts.
Vardags Limited (trading as Vardags) is a company registered in England and Wales (Company No. 7199468), with its registered office at 10 Old Bailey, London, EC4M 7NG. Vardags is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA Number 535955). The term “director” is used to refer to a director of Vardags Limited or an employee or consultant of Vardags Limited with equivalent standing. A list of the names of the directors of Vardags Limited together with a list of those who are designated as directors is open to inspection at the above address. VAT number: 99 001 7230.