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Ehret v. Ehret

Supreme Judicial Court of Maine

March 24, 2016

JAMES A. EHRET
v.
DEBORAH B. EHRET

         Submitted On Briefs September 28, 2015.

          Order denying motion for further findings with regard to James's income vacated. Child support order, spousal support order, and property distribution vacated. Remanded for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.

         On the briefs:

          Gene R. Libby, Esq., and Tara A. Rich, Esq., Libby O'Brien Kingsley & Champion, Kennebunk, for appellant James A. Ehret.

         Wendy Moulton Starkey, Esq., Rose Law, LLC, York, for appellee Deborah B. Ehret.

         Panel: SAUFLEY, C.J., and ALEXANDER, MEAD, GORMAN, JABAR, and HUMPHREY, JJ.

          OPINION

Page 102

          JABAR, J.

          [¶1] James A. Ehret appeals from a judgment of divorce from Deborah B. Ehret entered by the District Court (York, Janelle, J.). He contends that the court erred in determining his gross income and abused its discretion in awarding spousal support and distributing the parties' marital property. We vacate the judgment in part and remand for further proceedings.

         I. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

          [¶2] The trial court's supported factual findings provide the following limited background for this appeal. James and Deborah were married in July 1988. They are the parents of an adult son, an adult daughter, and a minor son. James is an airline pilot and has a greater earning capacity than Deborah. Due to her physical and mental health issues, Deborah has a limited ability to work and has worked little in recent years.

          [¶3] In April 2013, James filed a complaint for divorce. The court held a contested three-day hearing in January 2015, during which Deborah requested an award of spousal support in the amount of $1,500 per month. On March 4, 2015, the court entered a judgment of divorce and parental rights and responsibilities regarding the parties' minor son.

          [¶4] In its judgment, the court recited the parties' agreement that their minor son needed to be placed in a residential ...


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