(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 herself or himself at the 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 vocational evaluation.
(2) Qualification to administer and interpret inventories for assessing career potential.
(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, or education.
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