Vocational Evaluations in California

Marriage is ideally a partnership in which two people share the load of responsibilities- physical, emotional, or financial. Whatever agreed-upon roles these partners take on-whether it be as the primary breadwinner or the caretaker of home and kids, these spouses are supposed to be equals at the end of the day.

Divorce happens when the partnership no longer works, often because one or both partners have changed what they can or are willing to contribute to the marriage as a whole. Whether the parent giving childcare wants to return to work, someone loses a job, or the rules that governed a married couple have changed for any number of reasons, the partnership is unable to function as it did.

Just because a couple is separating does not mean that their business together has entirely concluded. How does one ensure that a former partner is pulling their agreed-upon weight when the relationship is no longer a motivation for participation?

In the previous entry we wrote in 2016, Vocational Evaluation was explained in legal and technical detail so that a client of ours might know what is entailed to pursue such a course of action. We would like to explore what might drive a person to request a spouse or former spouse’s vocational evaluation.

Divorce is an inconvenience at the best of times. Still, most can agree that it can also be time-consuming, costly, and emotionally draining in the long run, particularly when contentious. When everything is finalized, you would hope that circumstances and the commitment of all parties allow for adherence to divorce agreements, especially as it pertains to spousal and child support. Unfortunately, many issues can alter a person’s ability (or willingness) to contribute as they have initially agreed financially.

During the past year, many people have lost their jobs and cannot find new ones, which has made it challenging for some to keep up with alimony and child support. Unfortunately, even with most people cutting back on extracurriculars, there are still necessary expenses that must be paid.

Sometimes, a person may suspect that their ex is not making enough effort to find employment, out of spite or laziness. He or she may claim that they are unable to work due to injury or lack of qualifications in a lucrative field, but you may suspect otherwise. Maybe they do not feel like you need or deserve the agreed-upon amount of support, so they seem to be dragging their feet about providing it.

Rather than rail against your former mate, avoid anger and suspicion by consulting your legal representative, who can file for a Vocational Evaluation involving your ex.

The purpose of the Vocational Evaluation is “To assess current and/or future employability and wage-earning capacity for the court. It can include the presentation of a vocational plan outlining specific details as to how the person will return to the job market (e.g., training time, cost, appropriate programs, entry/ceiling earnings upon plan completion, and job availability).”

A Vocational Evaluation is a tool that can also be helpful to a person who is amenable to going back to work. The process allows the subject to learn more about themselves from a vocational perspective, expand occupational knowledge, and learn about different careers that fit their specific needs, aptitudes, and interests.

Essentially, the process of Vocational Evaluation can be beneficial to both parties. It allows an impartial professional to weigh in on a solution to an individual’s employability without the personal experiences, biases, and motivations that might otherwise color any suggestions for resolution.

See our previous post on Vocational Evaluations.


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