Modification of Alimony and Voluntary Underemployment: Flynn v. Flynn

Facts: The parties divorced in 2003 after 27 years of marriage. At the time of divorce, Husband, who was an equity partner in a prominent law firm, entered into a Marital Dissolution Agreement (“MDA”) that required him to pay permanent alimony to Wife. Six years later, Husband was expelled from his former law firm because […]

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Property Classification of Increase in Pension Benefits: Nusbaum v. Nusbaum

Facts: The parties divorced when Husband was 61 and Wife was 67. Both parties were found to be equally at fault in the divorce. Among other assets, Husband had a Federal Employee Retirement Service (FERS) pension, part of which was his separate property because it accrued prior to the marriage. The trial court determined the […]

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Post-Divorce Modification of Alimony Reversed: Jekot v. Jekot

Facts: Husband and Wife divorced after nearly 30 years of marriage. At trial, Wife was awarded rehabilitative alimony of $15,000 per month for the first 12 months, $10,000 per month for the next 24 months, and $5,000 per month for the final 24 months. Husband appealed. The Court of Appeals modified Wife’s alimony award from […]

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Classification of Military Retirement Benefits and Interpretation of Marital Dissolution Agreement: Cornwell v. Cornwell

Facts: At the time of divorce in 2005, the trial court incorporated the parties’ marital dissolution agreement into the final judgment of divorce, specifically finding the marital dissolution agreement to be a “fair and equitable distribution of the parties’ marital assets and liabilities.” Neither the trial court nor the marital dissolution agreement made any reference to […]

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Post-Divorce Modification of Alimony: Bordes v. Bordes

Facts: When the parties divorced in 1999, Husband agreed to pay spousal support to Wife in three phases: $1700 per month until child support ended for the parties’ oldest child, then $2300 per month until child support for the parties’ youngest child ended, then $2000 per month thereafter. In 2008, Husband filed a petition to […]

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Property Classification of Unvested Stock Options in Tennessee Divorce: Malone v. Malone

Facts: During the parties’ marriage, Husband accumulated 20,200 shares of vested and unvested stock options. At the divorce trial, Husband argued the options were of no value since the grant price was currently below the sale price. The trial court agreed and awarded Wife no interest in the stock options. Otherwise, the trial court awarded […]

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Long-Term Alimony in Tennessee: Gonsewski v. Gonsewski

Facts: The parties were divorced after a 21-year marriage. Wife was granted the divorce because of Husband’s inappropriate marital conduct. Both had been employed throughout the marriage. Husband earned $138,000 per year, including a $38,000 bonus that was not guaranteed to recur in the future. Wife earned $72,000 per year. In dividing the marital property, […]

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Divorce Recovery and Support Groups

A recent article by Jane Hamilton published at Salon.com will likely resonate with many readers of this blog. She writes about the emotions she felt after her divorce and how her exposure to other divorcees who were further along in the grieving process taught her that things will get better. The article appears below. What Kept Me […]

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Periodic Alimony: Fox v. Fox

Facts: Husband and Wife married in 1991, separated in 2006, and divorced in 2009. At the time of trial, Husband was 65. He is self-employed as a home inspector and earned profits of $47,312 in 2006, $71,557 in 2007, and $24,034 in 2008. Husband also received the following distributions from a family trust: $190,998 in 2006, […]

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Property Division and Alimony: Pettijohn v. Pettijohn

Facts: The parties divorced after 24 years of marriage. Husband earned nearly $100,000 while Wife earned $20,000. Wife suffered from multiple chronic health problems. The trial awarded the divorce to Wife based upon Husband’s inappropriate marital conduct, divided the marital estate almost equally, awarded Wife alimony in futuro of $750 per month (increasing to $1750 […]

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Child Support and Alimony Modification: Grisham v. Grisham

Facts: Parties divorced in 2006 after 24 years of marriage. Husband was ordered to pay child support, including a substantial upward deviation. Husband was also ordered to pay a significant sum of rehabilitative alimony over a protracted period of time. In 2008, Husband filed a petition to modify his child support and alimony obligations, citing decreased […]

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Transitional Alimony in Tennessee: McKin v. McKin

Facts: After an 18-year marriage, the parties divorced. The trial court divided the marital estate and ordered Husband to pay Wife $150,000 to equalize the division of property. The trial court found that Wife needed transitional alimony of $500 per month until such time as Husband paid the $150,000 necessary to complete the division of […]

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Relocation and Custody: Morris v. Morris

Facts: While the parties’ divorce action was pending, Wife relocated with the parties’ child to Illinois, where her family lived. Husband claimed Wife simply took off with no notice. Wife claimed Husband locked her and the children (Wife had a child from a previous relationship) out of the marital residence. The parties acknowledged that Wife […]

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Property Division and Alimony: Raper v. Raper

Facts: The parties, both 50 years old, were divorced after a 26-year marriage. Husband earned $35,000 annually while Wife earned $23,000. One month before the separation, Husband, in contemplation of divorce and knowing that Wife would take the marital residence upon divorce, took out a second mortgage on the marital residence to pay off various […]

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