Mitchell v. Mitchell Ė Decided 4/9/11

In a post judgment matrimonial proceeding, a wife was permitted to file a motion for an increase in her maintenance obligation, despite the partiesí agreement setting forth that the husbandís obligation will be reduced once the wife became eligible and received social security retirement benefits. The Court agreed to entertain said application, since the wife was able to demonstrate that she was unable to be self supporting both prior to and after receiving her social security retirement benefits.

Matter of Yorke v. Yorke Ė Decided 4/9/11

The Second Department determined that a parentís pro-rata share of college expenses is calculated by: (1) determining the total cost of attending college, including tuition, room and board; (2) determining the percentage of that total cost which is covered by financial aid; (3) applying the financial aid percentage to the tuition portion of the costs; and (4) multiplying the net tuition (tuition after deducting pro-rata financial aid) by the parentís percentage of responsibility. The Second Department held that it was improper for the Family Court to deduct Stafford loans prior to calculating a parentís pro-rata share of college expenses nor is it proper for Family Court to apply the total amount of other financial aid prior to calculating the parentís percentages.

Rich-Wolfe v. Wolfe

The Court granted the wife a 50% interest in the value of the husbandís business as a result of her directly assisting the husband in his business, along with the fact that the husband conceded that the wife made substantial direct and indirect contributions to the marital estate. Please note that this is a Third Department case.

Turner v. Rogers U.S. Supreme Court

The Court determined that there is no automatic right to counsel in child support contempt proceedings. However, the Court determined that States must have procedural safeguards, prior to making a determination whether the parent is able to comply with the support order.