Go to Top

When Your Ex-Spouse is Deliberately Underemployed

Sometimes, men have a unique situation to deal with during a divorce. A wife, in spite of her qualifications may choose to be underemployed, or may willfully choose to work much below her potential merely to manipulate the alimony or child support proceedings. The courts will account for such behavior by spouses, and may decide to intervene when there is sufficient proof that the wife is underemployed, or chooses not to work merely to be eligible for higher alimony or child support payments.

When a court determines alimony or child support payments, it will take into consideration not just the wife’s current income, but also the future or potential income. The potential income can depend on a number of factors, including the wife’s education levels, the jobs that she has worked at, and other factors. The court will take into account these factors, and determine the wife’s potential income. That can have a huge impact on the final alimony and child support payments that are decided on.

However, the courts do not act arbitrarily in such matters. They will consider whether the wife’s underemployment or the inability to work is due to genuine reasons. For instance, if the wife is no longer able to work because of physical or mental disability, the court will not decide to impute income to you. Additionally, there may be cases in which the wife has been laid off work, and is currently looking for work but is unable to find work, and in such cases, the court may not decide to impute income to you.

If you believe that your wife is behaving unreasonably and refuses to work in spite of her good job potential, speak with a Colorado divorce lawyer about how you can handle these matters.