Grady v. Grady

In Grady v. Grady, 295 Ark. 94, 747 S.W.2d 77 (1988), the Arkansas Supreme Court first held that a court may consider the fact that a supporting spouse has voluntarily changed his employment so as to lessen earning capacity and, in turn, the ability to pay alimony and child support. The court cautioned, however, that a chancellor's decision on whether to impute income must be based on the facts and circumstances of each case because situations exist where income reductions are reasonable and justifiable. The court acknowledged that courts must not unduly interfere with the personal lives and career choices of individuals merely because they have been involved in a divorce, but recognized their obligation to protect the interests of the family; a supporting spouse does not have total discretion in making financial decisions which affect the welfare of the family, if the minor children have to suffer at the expense of those decisions. In Grady, supra, the supreme court remanded the case for the trial court to make a determination regarding the husband's reasons for leaving gainful employment and the current financial status of the parties.