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Calculating Imputed Income in Divorce Proceedings

Examining Earning Capacity, Income Sources, and Intent in Spousal and Child Support Determinations

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will provide family law counsel with strategies for evaluating imputed income for asset divisions and child and spousal support determinations in divorce proceedings and settlements. The panel will offer insights on uncovering, establishing and evaluating potential sources of income; outline appropriate discovery methods to obtain necessary information for calculating imputed income; and discuss techniques to shield income when a spouse is employed by a closely held businesses.


Voluntary unemployment or underemployment, a financially disadvantageous job change, a sudden early retirement, or underutilization of income producing assets can all be evidence of a party’s intentional decrease in earnings to reduce support obligations in a divorce. The finances of a closely held business operated by one party can also be manipulated to provide an effective vehicle to hide income.

Counsel must be able to identify and leverage critical financial information contained in financial documents and tax returns to prepare the financial statements for the case file and to argue that a party’s earning capacity, not actual income earned, should be used to determine support obligations. Counsel must also be aware of evidence courts require to support an award based on imputed income and the role intent to avoid paying support or intent to reduce income plays in that analysis.

Listen as our authoritative panel offers strategies for imputing income, or contesting claims of imputed income, in divorce proceedings with questions of child and spousal support. The panel will provide insight on establishing and evaluating potential sources of income, outline appropriate discovery methods to obtain hidden financial information, and discuss techniques used to shield income when a spouse is employed by a closely held business.



  1. Review of case law on earning capacity and imputed income
  2. Discovery and evidence to support imputing income in a divorce
    1. Tax returns
    2. Financial statements
  3. Use of financial and vocational experts
  4. Calculating earning capacity


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What items in tax returns and financial statements can help determine earning capacity?
  • How do courts treat investments such as stocks, bonds and real estate in evaluating earning capacity?
  • What earning patterns and history can be used to support imputing income?
  • How can expense records be used to uncover hidden income in a closely held business?


Charles F. Vuotto, Jr., Esq.
Charles F. Vuotto, Jr., Esq.

Managing Partner
Tonneman Vuotto Enis & White

Mr. Vuotto's practice focuses on family law. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and Past...  |  Read More

Scott Maier, CPA, JD
Scott Maier, CPA, JD


Mr. Maier has more than 25 years of experience as an auditor, valuation consultant and business consultant....  |  Read More

Laura D. Dale
Laura D. Dale

Laura Dale & Associates

Ms. Dale focuses her practice on international and domestic family law cases. She is highly experienced in...  |  Read More

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