Vocational Examinations in Family Law Cases

Vocational Examinations in Spousal and Child Support Cases

As they pertain to family law issues, vocational examinations can be an important part of child support and spousal support proceedings. Essentially, vocational examinations involve a series of assessments designed to determine the earning potential of a spouse who is not working but is thought to be capable of doing so.

Vocational examinations can be requested by either spouse. If you are seeking child support and your spouse is not working, he or she cannot make the payments needed to adequately care for your children. If your spouse has the education and skills to find employment, however, a vocational examination can identify career paths, available jobs your spouse would qualify for and an estimated income level.

On the other hand, if you are paying excessive child support because your former spouse refuses to work, you could request a vocational examination to determine if he or she could qualify for some type of work that would allow for enough of a contribution to child support so that you didn't have to carry the entire burden yourself.

Working to Ensure That Both Parents Pay Their Fair Share

In either situation, the outcome of the vocational examination can result in the court ordering an unemployed or underemployed spouse to secure employment in line with his or her capabilities. If he or she fails to do so, the court can award child support based on the level of income the spouse could be making. This is commonly referred to as imputing income. Missouri law is very clear in this area, and the court does not appreciate noncompliance.

At Stange Law Firm, PC, our lawyers work diligently to see that you are put in the best possible situation as you move into the next phase of life after your divorce. No matter which side of the case you are on, we will present the most compelling possible argument to support your position.

To learn more about vocational examinations in family law cases, read our article entitled: Vocational and Lifestyle Experts: Getting to the Court to See Sides on Certain Support Issues.

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