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The issues that may arise in a divorce proceeding can be complex and confusing at times. As a result, the use of a skilled attorney can help a party protect his or her interests in the divorce. Sometimes, however, the issues in a case call for an analysis that requires a different type of expertise. While an attorney would know the ins and outs of the legal system, you generally wouldn’t go to an attorney for medical advice or for accounting purposes. The use of subject matter experts is not an uncommon practice in the law. Lawyers know that there are times when having someone with specific knowledge or expertise would be useful in getting a clearer view of the issues. In a divorce case, two such experts are vocational experts and business valuation experts - both of which allow the parties and the court to get a better idea of the factors involved in the case.
A vocational expert is someone that can analyze a person’s skills, experience, education, and other qualifications in relation to the current employment market. A vocational expert can provide parties or the court with an expert testimony stating the likelihood of a person getting a job, as well as the potential earning rate a person can expect in a particular line of work. Both parties may hire their own vocational expert. This can be of great value to the court, since it would allow the court to make an informed decision regarding appropriate support payments. The benefits of a vocational expert, however, do not end there.
In addition to providing the court with a clearer view of a party’s earning potential, a vocational expert can provide an assessment of the opposing party’s earning potential. The vocational expert can even provide an analysis of a party’s employability or earning potential after a material change in circumstances. The value of this is that it would allow a party to support or challenge a motion for modification of support payments. Finally, the skilled analysis of a vocational expert can help you ensure the establishment of a fair settlement agreement, should the parties make an agreement before bringing the case to trial.
A business valuation expert, on the other hand, can provide a valuable analysis of any businesses owned by one or both of the parties to a divorce case. This allows the court to get an idea of what property is and is not available for division in the divorce, and can help the court make a fair distribution of available property. The involved parties can also benefit from a business valuation expert, since the expert would allow the parties to make informed decisions should they decide to make a separation agreement.
When needed, our family law attorneys will work with vocational and business valuation experts who have experience in and understand divorce in Colorado. To begin discussing your case, contact us today.