Shields v. Shields
|26 November 2001
|In re the Marriage of Lavern Opal SHIELDS, Petitioner-Respondent, v. Vades R. SHIELDS, Respondent-Appellant.
|Missouri Court of Appeals
William J. Fleischaker, Roberts, Fleischaker, Williams, Wilson & Powell, Joplin, for appellant.
Patricia Brock Loveland, Neosho, for Respondent.
Before PREWITT, J., PARRISH, J., and RAHMEYER, J.
Vades R. Shields ("Husband") appeals from his judgment of dissolution of marriage. Husband contends that the trial court erred in its division of property. Finding no error, we affirm the trial court's judgment.
Husband and Lavern Opal Shields ("Wife") were married almost twenty years at the time they separated. Husband was 62 years old and Wife was 68 years old when they married. At the time of the marriage, Husband had a 280-acre farm, owned cattle, had certificates of deposit ("CDs"), investments, and cash. Wife had a beauty shop, which was subsequently sold. The parties lived off of income from social security, cattle, investments, and proceeds from Wife's sale of her beauty shop and house. The parties owned many CDs and investment accounts at the time of the dissolution; some CDs had been cashed and the proceeds remained to be divided at the time of trial. All of the property was titled jointly during the marriage. Husband was awarded sixty-eight percent of the property; Wife does not appeal.
Husband complains of the trial court's division of various CDs and proceeds from CDs, as well as one Edward Jones investment account. In Husband's first point he contends that the trial court's division of the proceeds of two CDs "is not supported by any evidence in that the amount awarded to the Petitioner when added to the amount awarded to the Respondent exceeds the total amount of the marital portion of the proceeds." His second point is the same as his first except that it is directed to several CDs that have not yet been cashed. In his third point Husband claims the trial court erred in awarding an Edward Jones account number XXXXXXXX ("Edward Jones account") to Wife rather than dividing it between Wife and Husband.
We will reverse the trial court's judgment in a dissolution of marriage action only if it has no substantial evidence to support it, it is against the weight of the evidence, or it erroneously declares or applies the law. Mehra v. Mehra, 819 S.W.2d 351, 353 (Mo. banc 1991).1 In reviewing the trial court's judgment we defer to the trial court's determinations of credibility and view the evidence and all permissible inferences from that evidence in the light most favorable to the judgment. Id. We ignore all contrary evidence. Id. We will not reverse the trial court's judgment if there is no showing of prejudice as a result of that judgment. Boone v. Boone, 637 S.W.2d 249, 251 (Mo.App. E.D. 1982).
Each of Husband's arguments on appeal are directed to the property division. The trial court's division of property is presumed correct and Husband, as the party complaining about the division, has the burden of overcoming that presumption. Waisblum v. Waisblum, 968 S.W.2d 753, 755 (Mo.App. W.D.1998). In a dissolution action the trial court is not required to make an equal distribution of property, only a just division. Id. at 756. The party challenging the division of property has the burden of overcoming the presumption that the trial court's division was correct. Id. at 755. The division of property will be reversed on appeal only if it is so "heavily and unduly weighted in favor of one party as to amount to an abuse of discretion." Id. (internal citation omitted).
Husband claims error in the trial court's division of the proceeds of two State Bank of Noel CDs cashed during the marriage of the parties.2 His specific claim of error is that the value assigned to the proceeds is greater than the marital interest in the proceeds. Husband's theory is that because the parties' adult children's names were on the CDs prior to their being cashed, the children owned part of these CDs. Husband theorizes that each listed owner owned an equal share of the CD on which they were named, and, as a result, Husband and Wife owned less than the whole value of the CD. Because the trial court assigned the full value of the proceeds of the CDs that were cashed, rather than only the share Husband believes he and Wife owned, he argues that the trial court awarded more than the marital portion of these proceeds. We do not agree with Husband's argument.
The parties agree that what was divided by the trial court was cash. Both parties agree that there was $9,800.01 in cash from the first CD and $4,904.11 from the second CD. This was the total amount divided between the parties by the trial court. There was no testimony that the cash in question was held by anyone other than Husband or Wife at the time of dissolution nor that the children contributed any funds to the CDs. All of the money that went into the CDs was marital property. Both parties testified that they intended to give each of their children a portion of the funds from the CDs. The children did not intervene in the dissolution to claim the funds as their own. The court properly disregarded the children's names on the previously titled CDs as an intended future gift.
We fail to see how, under these circumstances, the award exceeds the marital portion of the proceeds as Husband claims. Additionally, Husband points to no prejudice as each of the parties was awarded one-half of the proceeds. In Husband's attorney's opening statement, he said, "And the money is still there, and we're asking to divide it 50-50." We will not convict the trial court of error invited by Husband. Smith v. Associated Natural Gas Company, 7 S.W.3d 530, 537 (Mo.App. S.D.1999). Finding no abuse of discretion, we affirm the trial court's award of the proceeds of the State Bank of Noel CDs in the amount of $9,800.01 and $4,904.11.
Husband directs the same complaint to the trial court's division of CDs held at various banks. The CDs at issue are as follows: a Green Country Federal Loan and Savings Association CD ("Green Country CD") of $20,000; a Roosevelt Bank CD of $15,500; three Mercantile CDs in the amounts of $10,000, $12,130.54, and $12,425.82; and two Cornerstone CDs in the amounts of $20,000 and $10,000. The trial court divided the Green Country CD and the Roosevelt CD equally between Husband and Wife. The remaining CDs were divided two-thirds to Husband and one-third to Wife. Husband relies upon the same theory he presented in Point I, that because of the children being listed on the CDs with Husband and Wife, the marital portion of these CDs was not the full value of the CDs, and the trial court erred by treating the full value as marital property. Husband again fails to show that the trial court's division of these CDs was reversible error.
The evidence does not support Husband's claim that his children were joint owners of these CDs. No documents showing the actual titling of the CDs were in evidence or ever presented at trial. Husband gave no specific testimony regarding the titling of these CDs. Husband may have included some of this information on his "DR Form 1 (Summary of Marital and Non-Marital Property and Liabilities)" ("DR-1"), but that exhibit has not been...
To continue readingRequest your trial
McAllister v. McAllister
...We will not reverse the trial court's judgment if there is no showing of prejudice as a result of that judgment. Shields v. Shields, 59 S.W.3d 658, 660 (Mo.App. S.D.2001) citing to Boone v. Boone, 637 S.W.2d 249, 251 (Mo.App. E.D.1982); See also Rule In his first point relied on, Husband al......
In re Marriage of Denton
...from that evidence in the light most favorable to the judgment. Mehra v. Mehra, 819 S.W.2d 351, 353 (Mo. banc 1991); Shields v. Shields, 59 S.W.3d 658, 660 (Mo.App.2001). We ignore all contrary evidence. Mehra, 819 S.W.2d at II. Facts and Procedural History Husband and Wife were married in ......
In re Marriage of Murphey
..."We will not reverse the trial court's judgment if there is no showing of prejudice as a result of that judgment." Shields v. Shields, 59 S.W.3d 658, 660 (Mo.App.2001); McAllister, 101 S.W.3d at Point I In Father's first point, he contends the trial court erred in modifying the prior custod......
Walters v. Walters
...correct and Wife, as the party complaining about the division, has the burden of overcoming that presumption. Shields v. Shields, 59 S.W.3d 658, 660 (Mo. App.2001). Saliently, Linda Walters' undivided interest was not affected by the trial court's actions. Furthermore, Linda Walters could h......