Dividend stocks have been a popular way for investors to get the income they need. But with many people increasingly relying on dividend income, how can you be sure that the stocks you own won't cut their payouts, leaving you out in the cold?

In the following video, Fool markets analyst Mike Klesta talks with Fool contributor Dan Caplinger about some warning signs you can look for in assessing whether a dividend stock might have to cut its payout. Dan notes that looking at a company's earnings is a good starting point, but in many cases, you have to look beyond this accounting-based figure to get the real story behind the company's financial situation. Dan concludes with a new threat to dividend stocks that could persist for quite a while.

Fool contributor Dan Caplinger owns warrants on JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.