Back v. Back (2d DCA)

The trial court imputed the husband with income for the purpose of imputing child support.  The District Court reversed, holding that there was no evidence that the husband was voluntarily unemployed.

The husband had been terminated from his employment two weeks before trial; there was no dispute that the termination was involuntary and that it was not the result of misconduct on the part of the husband.  Further, the evidence showed that the husband had reached out to acquaintances in his industry to inquire about new employment and that he had several interviews scheduled.  The wife put on no evidence to the contrary.

The District Court reiterated that imputation of income requires a two-part process. First, the court must determine that a parent’s unemployment is voluntary, then it must determine the appropriate level of income to impute.  Because there was no evidence that the husband was voluntarily unemployed, it was error to impute income to him in an amount greater than he was actually earning on the date of trial.