Friday, November 25, 2005

"A rough record in a complicated divorce case sometimes means that "rough justice" is the best that can be done."; NebApp mostly upholds divorce marital property decree where husband and wife commingled personal accounts with childrens' trust accounts. Appeals court modfies decree to increase judgment husband owes for property settlement and his child supportHughes v. Hughes, 14 Neb. App. 229 November 22, 2005. No. A-04-939. Divorce involved sorting out marital property from separate gifted and inherited property. Also the the parties children inherited trust funds that the parents as custodians commingled with theirs. Mary Beth Hughes appeals the order of the Garfield County District Court, which dissolved her marriage to Gary Dean Hughes. The case is complicated by the fact that assets from Gary's deceased mother's trust have been improperly transferred and are now part of property which must be dealt with in this dissolution action, and the evidence does not allow accurate tracing of such trust assets. Nebraska Court of appeals denies husband as separate property money he put into an investment property because he failed to prove how his investments in property increased its value. "proof merely that money was spent on real estate does not establish that the real estate's value has been enhanced. Gary did not prove his entitlement to a set-aside as nonmarital property for expenditures from Emma's trust on Trapper's Creek. " The Wife claimed that Husband could not claim as his separate property funds placed into an investment account because funds came from children's accounts. further wife objected to the court's refusing to count her $25K life insurance proceeds. However the money was gone and the appeals court counted $25k anyway by how it calculated the husband's equalizing judgment in wife's favor. Court noted that while it might be improper for the parents to move around the kids'money that is usually a matter for another day: While it was possible for other persons or entities to have sought intervention in this action to assert claims against assets in the hands of Gary and Mary, no such relief was sought. See Yelkin v. Yelkin, 193 Neb. 789, 229 N.W.2d 59 (1975) (right of third parties to intervene in divorce proceedings is very limited, but may be permitted where it is necessary to procure justice for third persons whose property interest may be adversely affected in dissolution action). No potential claims of the various trusts and no claims of Jason and Kaycee are before us, and in any event, the record is inadequate to resolve any such claim. Compare Parker v. Parker, 1 Neb. App. 187, 492 N.W.2d 50 (1992) (district court erred in divorce action in attempting to mandate disposition of account under Nebraska Uniform Gifts to Minors Act, where parties' son was no longer minor).

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