Ex parte MacCallum, No. D-0749

CourtSupreme Court of Texas
Writing for the CourtPER CURIAM
Citation807 S.W.2d 729
PartiesEx parte Peter Stuart MacCALLUM, Jr., Relator
Decision Date01 May 1991
Docket NumberNo. D-0749

Page 729

807 S.W.2d 729
Ex parte Peter Stuart MacCALLUM, Jr., Relator.
No. D-0749.
May 1, 1991.

Page 730

Pat Morris, Corpus Christi, for relator.

Michael P. O'Reilly, Corpus Christi, for respondent.

PER CURIAM.

This is an original habeas corpus proceeding. After an evidentiary hearing, the district court found relator Peter Stuart MacCallum, Jr. in contempt for failure to surrender possession of his two sons to his former wife on weekends during relator's extended period of summer possession. Because we find the court orders which relator is charged with violating to be lacking in the specificity required to support a judgment of contempt, relator's petition for writ of habeas corpus is granted.

Relator and his former wife, Mary Sue MacCallum, were divorced in October 1987. Mary Sue was appointed managing conservator of the MacCallums' two sons. Relator was appointed possessory conservator of the children and the decree provided for specific periods of possession. The original decree provided for extended summer visitation for a period of "45 days each year commencing on July 6 and ending on August 20." The decree further provided that Mary Sue surrender the children at the beginning of each period of possession at her home and required relator to return the children to Mary Sue at her home at the end of each period of possession. The decree also granted Mary Sue a "superior right" to possession of the children on the first and third weekends of each month during relator's summer possession, "except for one 21-day uninterrupted period."

Approximately one and one-half years later, the court entered an order clarifying the earlier decree. This order replaced the paragraph granting Mary Sue possession of the children during relator's extended period of summer possession in its entirety. It continued to provide Mary Sue with possession on the first and third weekends of each month during relator's extended period summer possession. The language providing relator a 21-day uninterrupted period from Mary Sue's weekend possession was replaced with language granting Mary Sue a 21-day uninterrupted period of possession commencing on the first Friday of June and ending on the twenty-first day thereafter.

To support a judgment of contempt, the underlying decree must set forth the terms of compliance in clear, specific and unambiguous terms so that the person charged with obeying the decree will readily know exactly what duties and obligations are imposed upon him. Ex Parte Blasingame, 748 S.W.2d 444, 446 (Tex.1988); Ex Parte Slavin, 412 S.W.2d 43, 44 (Tex.1967). A court order...

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18 practice notes
  • Ex parte Chambers, No. 94-0495
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Texas
    • 15 Junio 1995
    ...person charged with obeying the decree will readily know exactly what duties and obligations are imposed upon him. Ex parte MacCallum, 807 S.W.2d 729, 730 (Tex.1991); Ex parte Hodges, 625 S.W.2d 304, 306 (Tex.1981); Ex parte Slavin, 412 S.W.2d 43, 44 (Tex.1967). Chambers argues that nonpaym......
  • In re Fountain, Cause No.01-12-00704-CV
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • 10 Diciembre 2013
    ...requires inferences or conclusions about which reasonable persons might differ.") (emphasis in original) (citing Ex parte MacCallum, 807 S.W.2d 729, 730 (Tex. 1991)). This is fatal to the commitment order because Fountain lacked the requisite notification of how to purge her contempt and ho......
  • In re Wiese
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • 12 Agosto 1999
    ...know exactly what duties and obligations are imposed upon him. Ex parte Chambers, 898 S.W.2d 257, 260 (Tex. 1995); Ex parte MacCallum 807 S.W.2d 729, 730 (Tex. 1991). Accordingly, our determination of whether the turnover order supported the subsequent contempt order is contingent upon whet......
  • VanDeWater, In re, No. 04-97-00560-CV
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • 25 Marzo 1998
    ...the statute. In this case, VanDeWater's affidavit of indigency was timely contested on June 6. See TEX.R.APP. P. 40(a)(3)(C); Ramirez, 807 S.W.2d at 729. The trial court had ten days, until June 16, to continue its ruling or to decide whether VanDeWater was indigent and her appeal frivolous......
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18 cases
  • Ex parte Chambers, No. 94-0495
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Texas
    • 15 Junio 1995
    ...person charged with obeying the decree will readily know exactly what duties and obligations are imposed upon him. Ex parte MacCallum, 807 S.W.2d 729, 730 (Tex.1991); Ex parte Hodges, 625 S.W.2d 304, 306 (Tex.1981); Ex parte Slavin, 412 S.W.2d 43, 44 (Tex.1967). Chambers argues that nonpaym......
  • In re Fountain, Cause No.01-12-00704-CV
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • 10 Diciembre 2013
    ...requires inferences or conclusions about which reasonable persons might differ.") (emphasis in original) (citing Ex parte MacCallum, 807 S.W.2d 729, 730 (Tex. 1991)). This is fatal to the commitment order because Fountain lacked the requisite notification of how to purge her contempt and ho......
  • In re Wiese
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • 12 Agosto 1999
    ...know exactly what duties and obligations are imposed upon him. Ex parte Chambers, 898 S.W.2d 257, 260 (Tex. 1995); Ex parte MacCallum 807 S.W.2d 729, 730 (Tex. 1991). Accordingly, our determination of whether the turnover order supported the subsequent contempt order is contingent upon whet......
  • VanDeWater, In re, No. 04-97-00560-CV
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas
    • 25 Marzo 1998
    ...the statute. In this case, VanDeWater's affidavit of indigency was timely contested on June 6. See TEX.R.APP. P. 40(a)(3)(C); Ramirez, 807 S.W.2d at 729. The trial court had ten days, until June 16, to continue its ruling or to decide whether VanDeWater was indigent and her appeal frivolous......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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