CALIFORNIA FAMILY CODE
ORDERS FOR VOCATIONAL EXAMINATIONS
Family Code Section 4331
(a) In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage or for legal separation
of the parties, the court may order a party to submit to an examination
by a vocational training counselor. The examination shall include an assessment
of the party's ability to obtain employment based upon the party's
age, health, education, marketable skills, employment history, and the
current availability of employment opportunities. The focus of the examination
shall be on an assessment of the party's ability to obtain employment
that would allow the party to maintain their marital standard of living.
(b) The order may be made only on motion, for good cause, and on notice
to the party to be examined and to all parties. The order shall specify
the time, place, manner, conditions, scope of the examination, and the
person or persons by whom it is to be made.
(c) A party who does not comply with an order under this section is subject
to the same consequences provided for failure to comply with an examination
ordered pursuant to Chapter 15 (commencing with Section 2032.010) of Title
4 of Part 4 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(d) "Vocational training counselor" for the purpose of this section
means an individual with sufficient knowledge, skill, experience, training,
or education in interviewing, administering, and interpreting tests for
analysis of marketable skills, formulating career goals, planning courses
of training and study, and assessing the job market, to qualify as an
expert in vocational training under Section 720 of the Evidence Code.
(e) A vocational training counselor shall have at least the following qualifications:
(1) A master's degree in the behavioral sciences, or other postgraduate
degree that the court finds provides sufficient training to perform a
(2) Qualification to administer and interpret inventories for assessing
(3) Demonstrated ability in interviewing clients and assessing marketable
skills with an understanding of age constraints, physical and mental health,
previous education and experience, and time and geographic mobility constraints.
(4) Knowledge of current employment conditions, job market, and wages in
the indicated geographic area.
(5) Knowledge of education and training programs in the area with costs
and time plans for these programs.
(f) The court may order the supporting spouse to pay, in addition to spousal
support, the necessary expenses and costs of the counseling, retraining,