Bankruptcy is a chance for underwater debtors to start from scratch. However, hidden assets make it complicated.
The Department of Justice estimates that 1 in 10 bankruptcy filings involve at least one kind of fraud, like concealment of assets. There are plenty of ways to hide assets, from misidentifying the item (i.e. mislabeling a diamond as a “cubic zirconia,” says one trustee) to keeping mum about other assets. The thought is tempting, especially in a volatile economy.