When I got divorced, my wife had not worked for about 5 years. Prior to our marriage, however, she did have fairly nice income working in customer service at an insurance company. When we sat down at the financial mediation table in October 2006. I was thinking: “she has the capability to make $30,000 to $40,000”. But no one told about “Imputed Income”.
Imputed income is income assigned to your spouse by 1) both parties agreeing or 2) a judge’s/mediator’s decision. Imputed income can be used when your spouse has been unemployed or is current underemployed. It is an option that may decrease your share of child support or reduce spousal maintenance.
Additionally, if you are unemployed or underemployed, visiting with a career expert can help. The expert can guide you through all your options, identify your strengths and more narrowly direct your search.
That’s why we had Mark Raderstorf and Jen Bey of Raderstorf and Associated come in to speak at our October 25th meeting. Both are vocational experts and were extremely insightful and packed with information.
Disputed Income (Imputed income)
Mark provided the following tips:
- Do a vocational assessment if your spouse a) is struggling with confidence, b) appears to be dragging her feet returning to work or c) is being unreasonable with returning to work expectations.
- When forecasting imputed income, Mark’s experience is to expect your spouse to make between 25% and 50% of what she made prior to leaving work. This assumes a fair amount of time out of work – 8 to 15 years. She would make more if time away from work is shorter and she stays in her prior field of work. She would make less if she has been out longer or changes career field.
- Her job search would take a minimum of 3 to 6 months; the longer her absence from work or the higher the salary, the longer it will take.
- A vocational assessment is roughly $2,000 to $2,500 and is a day long evaluation including: education and work history, interest exploration and career goals, comprehensive testing (interests, intelligence, aptitude, work values…), career goal recommendation, path to employment, timeline of activity and earnings projections.
Contact Mark if you have more questions: Mark@RaderstorfAssociates.com or 612.823.5187
For your own search here are a few sites and tips Mark and Jen provided:
- careerwise – a website with career exploration, job search and education planning
- careeronestop – a website with self assessments and career search
- Glassdoor – a website with salary information, job postings and company search
- O*Net – a website with occupational information (job tasks, knowledge needs, skills and abilities needed …)
Find the hidden job market with these tips: network, have informational interviews and volunteer.
Mark and Jen also provided a few books on the subject:
- The Big Shift (Marc Friedman)
- Portfolio Life (David Corbett)
- Encore Career Handbook (Marci Alboher)
- The 20 Minute Networking Meeting (Marcia Ballinger)
Our meetings are a great way to connect with other men, learn from experts and get out of the house! Come to a meeting to help yourself, learn from each other and together we’ll build a great community of men!