As a family law attorney, I get asked a lot of questions such as; 


What do I do if my spouse just quits their job? 


How am I going to receive child support? 


Am I going to have to pay them child support? 


Those questions are legitimate concerns that a parent may have. 


There are often a lot of emotional issues surrounding a divorce. One person may decide to quit their job or choose to work under the table in order to avoid paying child support. Some people even go as far as quitting their job just to receive child support from the other parent. 


In cases like this, we often find that it is in the best interest of our client to go ahead and have a vocational examination done. When we have that done, we can determine the earning capacity of the unemployed spouse. We would then determine how much money they would be earning if they were gainfully employed.


Looking at the Bigger Picture


We can then investigate what their assets are. How are they supporting themselves? Are they living off a significant amount of savings? Do they have rental properties that they are using for income? In those cases, we may be able to attach some of those assets for the payment of child support, particularly if we have a support order that they are refusing to comply with. 

We will often refer cases for enforcement to child support services once we have a valid order. In these cases, if the parent simply chooses not to pay, they can lose their driver’s license, their professional license, and their tax returns can be levied. If they are married to someone else, the joint income taxes may be levied.

You will be able to look at all different available options if your spouse just chooses to quit their job. In California, public policy determines that both parents must provide support for the children. This means that they expect that each parent is going to be contributing to the day to day needs of those children. Courts do not look fondly on a parent that just chooses to quit their job in order to avoid supporting their children.


If you have any questions and are wondering what to do in a situation where your spouse has quit their job either so that they can collect child support from you, or so that they don’t need to pay child support, shoot us over an email or give us a call.