Practice Area: Lawsuits & Disputes
Outcome: Client received relief, upheld on appeal
Description: The Circuit Court, awarded our client, appellee wife 47 percent of the enhanced value of the parties' home, one-half of the pension plan, and one-half of the management savings plan, as well as alimony, in a marriage dissolution action. Appellant husband appealed. The part of the final judgment pertaining to financial issues became void when the court set it aside. The wife's Fla. R. Civ. P. 1.540 motion was not a pleading. The wife had an interest in the marital part of the assets, and any passive accumulations through the year 2000. To value the assets as of 1996 would reward the husband for his deceit with the full market appreciation of the marital portion of the assets, while depriving the wife of the appreciation of her interest. The trial court was within its discretion to discredit the husband's assertion that the information necessary to deduct nonmarital portions of the pension and management savings plan was unavailable. The trial court, in calculating the husband's special equity, failed to subtract half of one of the mortgages. The wife was not entitled to interest on the value of the home since 1996, as the trial court had already valued the home as of 2000. The value of the management savings plan was calculated at present value. The trial court failed to make the proper factual findings justifying the wife's need for permanent periodic alimony. OUTCOME: The judgment was affirmed as to the wife's petition to set aside a judgment, in valuing assets, in the award of pension and management savings plans; and remanded back to the trial as to permanent periodic alimony. The award of attorney's fees to our client was upheld.