Green v. James

CourtSupreme Court of Oklahoma
Citation296 P. 743,147 Okla. 273,1931 OK 75
Docket Number19706.
PartiesGREEN v. JAMES et al.
Decision Date10 March 1931

296 P. 743

147 Okla. 273, 1931 OK 75

JAMES et al.

No. 19706.

Supreme Court of Oklahoma

March 10, 1931

Syllabus by the Court.

That neither defendant nor his attorney was notified of time that case was set for trial is insufficient ground to vacate judgment.

"It is not a sufficient ground upon which to vacate a judgment that neither defendant nor his attorney of record was notified of the time that the case was set for trial." Wilson v. Porter, 94 Okl. 259, 221 P. 713.

Verification of petition in divorce action as required by statute is not jurisdictional; failure to verify petition in divorce action is waived if case is tried on merits without objection (Comp. St. 1921, § 503).

"The verification of the petition in an action for divorce, as provided for by section 503, C. O. S. 1921, is not jurisdictional, and the failure to verify is waived, if no objection is made, and the cause proceeds to trial on the merits." Javine v. Javine, 134 Okl. 283, 273 P. 267.

Assignment of error not supported by authorities or argument will not be considered by appellate court.

An assignment of error supported neither by authorities nor argument will not be considered by this court.

Equity court will not, at suit of one of parties to fraudulent executory contract, compel its execution or decree cancellation, or after execution set it aside.

If a contract has been entered into through fraud, or to accomplish any fraudulent purpose, a court of equity will not, at the suit of one of the fraudulent parties, a participes doli; while the agreement is still executory, either compel its execution or decree its cancellation, nor after it has been executed set it aside, and thus restore the plaintiff to the property or other interests which he has fraudulently transferred. Equity will leave such parties in exactly the position in which they have placed themselves, refusing all affirmative aid to either of the fraudulent parties.

Divorce decree procured by collusion is voidable, not void.

A decree of divorce, though procured by collusion of the parties, is not void on that account; at most it is voidable.

Divorce decree will not be set aside at instance of party guilty of laches; one accepting benefits and privileges of divorce decree by remarriage is estopped from assailing decree, even though it is void for want of jurisdiction.

A decree of divorce will not be set aside at the instance of a party who has been guilty of laches in applying for relief. "One who accepts the benefits and privileges of a divorce decree by a remarriage, even though the decree be void for want of jurisdiction, is estopped from thereafter assailing such decree." Cummings v. Huddleston, 99 Okl. 195, 226 P. 104, 105.

Additional Syllabus by Editorial Staff.

Judgment is not "void" in legal sense unless invalidity appears on face of record.

Appeal from District Court, Seminole County; George C. Crump, Judge.

Action by Lizzie Green, formerly Lizzie Dial, on behalf of herself and as guardian of Leola Dial, her minor child, against Mose James, and others. Judgment for defendants, and plaintiff appeals.

Affirmed. [296 P. 744]

Robert Burns, of Oklahoma City, and Biggers, Wilson & Aldridge, of Wewoka, for plaintiff in error.

B. F. Davis and J. A. Patterson, both of Wewoka, and Edgar A. de Meules, of Tulsa, for defendants in error.


On December 17, 1926, Lizzie Green, formerly Lizzie Dial, commenced this action in the district court of Seminole county on behalf of herself and as guardian of Leola Dial, her minor child, and against Mose James, Annie E. James, J. A. Patterson, personally and as trustee, the Indian Territory Illuminating Oil Company, a corporation, Foster Petroleum Company, and Amerada Petroleum Corporation. Plaintiff sought vacation of a decree and judgment in divorce rendered in said court March 17, 1914, dissolving the marriage relation theretofore existing between Lizzie Dial and Raford Dial, now deceased.

Raford Dial, during his lifetime owned the southeast one-fourth of section 24, township 9 north, range 6 east, Seminole county, Okl. Shortly after the decree of divorce he conveyed the described real estate to Annie E. James. The other defendants acquired various interests in said lands; the oil companies' interests being oil and gas mining leases. The judgment of the trial court was for defendants, quieting their respective interests. Plaintiff appealed, but failed to serve case-made upon the oil companies. Thereafter, when confronted with motion to dismiss for such failure, plaintiff dismissed as to the oil companies.

On September 16, 1913, Raford Dial filed his petition for divorce against Lizzie Dial, based upon the ground of abandonment. The petition was signed by "W. H. Bishop, Attorney for Plf," and "Raford Dial." The verification was attempted in this manner: "Subscribed and sworn to before me this the 16th day of Sept. 1913. W. E. Harber, Notary Public [Seal.] My Commission expires: Dec. 18, 1916."

Lizzie Dial answered, claiming plaintiff had abandoned her; alleged the existence of one child, Leola May Dyer, born June 1, 1912, of which the plaintiff was the father, but whom plaintiff had not supported; alleged that plaintiff was an enrolled Freedman of the Seminole Tribe of Indians, and owned the land heretofore described, and prayed for $25, per month for the support of their minor child; prayed further that plaintiff's petition be denied "but that if the court should think it to the best interest of all parties concerned that said parties be divorced, that so much of the property of said plaintiff be set off to said defendant as the court shall deem proper for defendant's share in the same and for the keep and maintenance of said minor child, that said defendant be awarded the custody of said minor child, and that said defendant be awarded such other and further relief as to the court seemeth equitable and just."

On March 16, 1914, Raford Dial and Lizzie Dial entered into an agreement in view of the divorce suit pending wherein Lizzie Dial agreed to withdraw her answer filed in said cause wherein she sought "one-eighth of the first party's land and $25.00 per month alimony," and Lizzie Dial "further agrees not to appear against said first party in said action, especially for the purpose of contesting the issue raised by said answer herein"--all of which was based upon a recited consideration of Raford Dial agreeing "to reasonably support a minor child born to said second party shortly after said marriage."

Thereafter and on March 17, 1914, the cause for divorce was heard by Hon. Tom D. McKeown, district judge, and a judgment was rendered which recites the issuance of summons in due time, the failure of defendant to appear or plead, the consideration of the allegations of plaintiff's petition as confessed, the hearing of oral testimony of witnesses, sworn and examined in open court, the residence of plaintiff in good faith for the required period of time, the marriage of plaintiff and defendant, etc. Then follows the finding of abandonment for more than twelve months by defendant of the plaintiff. The decree is "that the marriage relation now existing between Lizzie Dial and Raford Dial be and the same is, hereby dissolved and both parties are released from the same."

The judgment continues, "It is further ordered that each party hereto have the same property rights which they each had previous in said marriage"; and then follows the statutory six months' clause.

Thereafter and on May 20, 1914, Raford Dial, by warranty deed, conveyed the land heretofore described to his mother, Annie E. James. On June 24, 1916, Raford Dial married Roxie Elliott, and from this union four children were born, three of whom survive. In 1922, Raford Dial died, and Lizzie Dial attended his funeral. Lizzie Dial well knew of the divorce decree, and considered herself single for a time. She knew also of the subsequent marriage of her former husband.

On February 14, 1924, Annie E. James conveyed an undivided one-fourth interest in the oil and gas and other minerals under the land heretofore described to defendant in error J. A. Patterson.

On August 6, 1924, Annie E. James and J. A. Patterson, joined by their respective spouses, executed an oil and gas mining lease to the lands first described, in favor of one Madkin, who in turn and on August 13, 1924, assigned the same to the I. T. I. O. Company and the Foster Petroleum Company.

On August 10, 1925, Annie E. James conveyed an undivided one-sixteenth interest in [296 P. 745] the oil and gas and other minerals to the lands first described to J. A. Patterson as...

To continue reading

Request your trial
1 cases
  • Green v. James, Case Number: 19706
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oklahoma
    • 10 Marzo 1931
    ...1931 OK 75296 P. 743147 Okla. 273 GREEN et al. v. JAMES et al. Case Number: 19706Supreme Court of OklahomaDecided: March 10, 1931 Syllabus ¶0 1. Judgment--Lack of Notice to Defendant or Attorney as to Setting of Case not Ground for Vacating Judgment. "It is not a sufficient ground upon whic......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT