Stephens’ Squibs – August 2017

Alimony:

Barlow v. Barlow, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1784 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2017).  Trial court erred calculating husband’s income when it used the Husband’s 2013 bonus as opposed to amount of 2014 bonus.

Dennis v. Dennis, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1717 (Fla. 1st DCA 2017).  Trial court erred failing to terminate alimony retroactively to date she began receiving pension payments.  Trial court has discretion to modify alimony from date of petition or any subsequent date.  Retroactivity is rule rather than exception.

Appeals:

Pataro v. Pataro, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1721 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2017).  Order sanctioning party for discovery violation is a non-final, non-appealable order.

Attorneys Fees:

Bond v. Bond, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1779 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2017).  Error to award attorney’s fees when ability based on party’s ability to borrow funds from a friend.  Court can only consider those financial resources subject to that individual’s control.

Child Support:

Cardona v. Casas, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1803 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2017).  Trial court erred requiring husband to name wife as beneficiary of life insurance policy for child support.  Remanded to specify proceeds used for children in event of husband’s death.

Bond v. Bond, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1779 (Fla. 2nd DCA 2017).  Error not to provide husband with in-kind child support credit for paying for ex-wife’s mortgage incident to child support. When one party is required to pay the mortgage payment or housing expenses of the other party, it is considered an in-kind contribution for child support.

Equitable Distribution:

Sturms v. Sturms, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1824 (Fla. 1st DCA 2017).  Trial court found oil business acquired with proceeds from pre-marital company was a marital asset when the husband commingled the proceeds of the sale of the pre-marital company with marital funds. Court erred distributing Husband’s Jaguar twice.

Vilardi v. Vilardi, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1817 (Fla. 5th DCA 2017).  Trial court erred distributing entire marital debt in amount of $281,782 to Husband based solely on Wife’s inability to pay.  A gap in spouses earning abilities is insufficient basis for unequal distribution.

Injunctions:

Hamane v. Elofir, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1818 (Fla. 5th DCA 2017).  Trial court erred dissolving domestic violence injunction when no evidence was presented demonstrating underlying scenario for injunction no longer exists.

Parenting:

Castellat v. Pereira, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1804 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2017).  Order dismissing former same sex partner’s petition for custody of child created through assisted reproduction technology affirmed when petitioner is not biological or legal parent.

Procedure:

Stinko v. Stinko, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1806 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2017).  Trial court erred denying motion to domesticate Ohio judgment because it provided grandparent visitation which was contrary to Florida law.  Full Faith and Credit (rather than Comity) governs domestication and enforcement of foreign decrees.

Pataro v. Pataro, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1721 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2017).  Trial court erred granting motion to set aside final judgment without setting matter for an evidentiary hearing.

Destefanis v. Mingtan, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1683 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2017).  Trial court abused discretion denying motion to dismiss for forum non conveniens when neither party were US citizens, neither party currently living in Florida and not one witness resided in Florida.

Feducia v. Feducia, 42 Fla.L.Weekly D1646 (Fla. 1st DCA 2017).  Incarcerated party’s due process rights violated if denied telephonic participation in a civil hearing if requested.

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