Alimony:

Bateh v. Bateh, 98 So.3d 750 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012).  Trial court’s final judgment reversed when it did not clearly articulate Wife’s needs, even though nominal alimony was awarded.

Whelpley v. Whelpley, 98 So.3d 780 (Fla. 4th DCA 2012).  Award of bridge the gap alimony for 3 years affirmed when findings supported rehabilitative.

Attorney Fees:

Hitchcock v. Hitchcock, 37 Fla. L. Weekly D2333 (Fla. 4th DCA 2012).  Award of attorney’s fees reversed when parties were left in relatively same financial position after mandate trial.

Hoff v. Hoff, 100 So.3d 1164 (Fla. 4th DCA 2012).  Denial of temporary attorney’s fees affirmed even when other spouse is in better financial position.  Temporary orders are those where Judge has broadest discretion.

Fonderson v. Lairap, 98 So.3d 715 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2012).  Award of temporary attorney’s fees reversed when amount awarded was not based on facts and there was no findings of reasonableness.

Domestic Violence:

Alter v. Paquette, 98 So.3d 218 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2012).  Injunction against repeat violence reversed.  Text messages to ex-girlfriend requesting repayment of money loaned to her during relationship do not constitute stalking and do not count as acts of violence.

Johns v. Johns, 101 So.3d 377 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012).  Domestic violence injunction entered without providing respondent opportunity to testify about allegations or present witnesses remanded for full evidentiary hearing.

Enforcement:

Sabatini v. Wigh, 98 So.3d 244 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012).  Order of contempt requiring former wife to change child’s school as sanction reversed as it did not consider best interests of child.

Equitable Distribution:

Amos v. Amos, 99 So.3d 979 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012).  Finding of “remote dissipation” of stocks wife transferred to brother 3 years before filing affirmed under catchall of subsection (j).

Franklin v. Patterson-Franklin, 98 So.3d 732 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2012).  Trial court erred in determining equalization of retirements.  Former husband did not object at hearing and presented a different theory at rehearing.  Former husband pointed out actual error for first time on appeal and failed to preserve error.

Bateh v. Bateh, 98 So,3d 750 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012).   Trial court affirmed for finding of no marital misconduct (waste).  Abuse of discretion standard. Trial court reversed for not addressing $30,000 in furniture husband bought after filing, $13,000 check written to Husband’s brother and trial court failed to identify and value auto used by children.

Exclusive Use & Possession:

Nolan v. Nolan, 100 So.3d 170 (Fla. 5th DCA 2012).  Trial court reversed for failing to add value of exclusive use and possession award to Wife’s income for purposes of calculating child support.

Modification:

Van Looven v. Van Looven, 100 So.3d 148 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012).  Modification petition alleging child support should be reduced consistent with child’s best interest because Husband paid amount that exceeded guidelines properly dismissed because it contained no allegation of substantial, permanent, involuntary change of circumstances.

Procedure:

In Re: Amendments to Fla. Family Rules, 101 So.3d 360 (Fla. 2012).  Creates Rule 12.442 (proposals for settlements) stating Rule 1.442 does not apply to family matters.  Also creates new Rule 12.071 (constitutional challenge to state statute or county ordinance) and 12.281 (inadvertent disclosure of privileged material).

Support:

Murphy v. Murphy, 37 Fla. L. Weekly D2319, 2012 WL 4511622 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2012).  Finding of supportive relationship reversed when there was no parallel determination that recipient spouse is receiving economic support from third party cohabitant.

Relocation:

Wright v. Milner, 98 So.3d 259 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012).  Order denying petition to relocate reversed and remanded with instructions for trial court to grant relocation based on record evidence.  Short opinion.

Stephens’ Squibs – October 2012

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