Mattson v. Mattson

Decision Date07 April 1931
Citation204 Wis. 424,235 N.W. 767
CourtWisconsin Supreme Court


Appeal from a judgment and an order of the County Court for Chippewa County; Dayton E. Cook, County Judge.

Divorce action by Lena Mattson against Joseph Mattson. From a judgment dismissing the complaint and an order denying suit money, plaintiff appeals.--[[[By Editorial Staff.]

Reversed and remanded, with directions.

Action begun September 27, 1929; judgment entered November 25, 1929, order entered November 26, 1929. Divorce. The plaintiff and defendant were married June 7, 1910, and have both resided since that time continuously in Chippewa county, Wis. There were three children--Florence, aged eighteen, who at the time of the trial was married; Robert, seventeen; and Violet, five. The amended complaint charges the defendant with cruel and inhuman treatment and failure to support. The evidence upon the trial which related to physical as well as mental castigation of the plaintiff by the defendant of itself amply sustains the allegations of the complaint. It also appears that the defendant made excessive and abnormal demands upon the plaintiff which may well have contributed to the final result. Upon the trial it also appeared that one Charles Hewitt was accustomed to visit at the home of the parties, although no evidence was offered to prove any misconduct between plaintiff and the said Hewitt.

After finding as to formal matters, the court found: “That the marital difficulties which have occurred between the plaintiff and defendant herein, have been largely brought about and have been contributed to by the plaintiff permitting one Charles Hewitt visiting the home of the parties hereto at many times during the day and night for a period of about two years, and against the wishes and desires of the defendant in this action. That the plaintiff by reason of such conduct and her associations with the said Hewitt, has brought about a separation in the family and that the plaintiff does not come into court with clean hands and is not entitled to any of the relief she wished for in the complaint for that reason.” Judgment was entered accordingly dismissing the plaintiff's complaint, from which plaintiff appeals. There is also an appeal from the order denying suit money to enable the plaintiff to prosecute this appeal.Larrabee & Larrabee, of Chippewa Falls, for appellant.

Alexander Wiley and Robert L. Wiley, both of Chippewa Falls, for respondent.


While the court made no specific finding, it is a fair inference from the fifth finding quoted in the statement of facts that the court was of the opinion that the plaintiff should be denied a divorce, although the allegations of the complaint were established, because of the fact that she had permitted the presence of Charles Hewitt in the home of the parties. The position taken in this case raises the question as to what...

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2 cases
  • Newton v. Newton
    • United States
    • Wisconsin Supreme Court
    • January 3, 1967
    ...acted on a mistake of law respecting the right of a court to exercise discretion in cases of this kind.' Mattson v. Mattson (1931), 204 Wis. 424, 426, 235 N.W. 767, 74 A.L.R. 269. The plaintiff seeks a divorce upon the ground of cruel and inhuman In Heffernan v. Heffernan (1965), 27 Wis.2d ......
  • Household Utilities, Inc. v. Andrews Co., Inc.
    • United States
    • Wisconsin Supreme Court
    • January 6, 1976
    ...from such an order if the trial court had, in fact, properly evaluated the evidence. However, in quoting from Mattson v. Mattson (1931), 204 Wis. 424, 426, 235 N.W. 767, which in turn cited a California decision, the court indicated that in such a case the trial court's finding would not be......

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