We have seen it countless times. A wife or husband shows up at a divorce trial and starts making assumptions about the income and business of his or her spouse, who is self-employed. Often, the wife or husband of the self-employed spouse, who is either a freelancer or owner of his/her own business, has absolutely no idea what he or she is talking about.
For example, if you are a freelancer or self-employed, your spouse may claim that you are purposely earning below your potential. “Your spouse may accuse you of sandbagging your business, or, in other words, purposely earning less than what your earning potential allows you to,” explains our Salt Lake City alimony attorney Emy A. Cordano.
What do you do? Your spouse sounds convincing, and the judge most likely has no idea about how your business works either. That is where an expert witness will come in handy. If you get the right expert witness to testify in court, he or she might be able to provide facts and statistics to demonstrate that under your current circumstances, you or your business can only yield as much revenue.
We know exactly why your spouse is doing this. He or she may actually know how your business works – after all, this is the person you have woken up next to for the past X years – but he or she wants to get more alimony from you. If you share children, your spouse might also play the “my spouse is under-earning” card to get more child support.
Testimony from an expert witness can help the judge and everyone else in the courtroom to have a clear understanding of how your business works and how much money your earning potential allows you to make. Also, an expert witness can help lend credibility to claims you make about your own business.
“Whether you are a freelancer or self-employed, testimony from an expert witness can help the judge understand many aspects of your business,” says our experienced alimony attorney in Salt Lake City. For example, your spouse may not be aware of this, but there are most likely certain taxes and expenses that are necessary to run your business. Therefore, these expenses cannot be viewed as something that can be used for alimony or child support.
Some elements of your business like taxes and expenses can significantly reduce the amount of income that you get from being a freelancer or running your own business. And while it sounds like an excuse to pay your spouse less alimony and child support when you say it, it sounds way more convincing when it’s coming from an expert witness.
However, do keep in mind that you cannot use just any expert witness for your divorce case. Our Salt Lake City alimony attorney reminds readers that expert witnesses are required to pass scrutiny with the judge. In other words, before testifying in court, your expert witness will be required to prove that he or she qualifies as an expert.
Luckily for you, our Utah divorce attorney Emy A. Cordano works with countless expert witnesses who can testify just about any industry, business model, and profession. If you are a freelancer or owner of a business, do not let your divorce run its course. Your spouse will most likely want to get from you more than what you can give. Get a legal consultation from our divorce lawyers by calling at 801-804-5152 today.