Stein v. Stein, No. 00-263.

Docket NºNo. 00-263.
Citation800 A.2d 460
Case DateApril 15, 2002
CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Vermont

800 A.2d 460

Michelle E. STEIN
v.
Daniel E. STEIN

No. 00-263.

Supreme Court of Vermont.

April 15, 2002.


Before AMESTOY, C.J., DOOLEY, MORSE, JOHNSON and SKOGLUND, JJ.

800 A.2d 461
ENTRY ORDER

Father appeals the judgment of the family court affirming the magistrate's enforcement order regarding father's child support obligation. Father raises numerous issues on appeal, but essentially challenges the constitutionality of the child support guidelines applied to parents with shared custody, arguing that they deny him equal protection of the law. He also specifically challenges the magistrate's computation of different child support amounts for the school year and summer vacation in the underlying child support order as denying him equal protection of the law. Finally, father argues that the magistrate erred by failing to modify his child support obligation and by failing to forgive his accrued arrears. We affirm.

The parties were divorced by order of the family court on August 12, 1999. They stipulated to shared custody for their two children, but contested the issue of child support. Both mother and father were represented by counsel at this time. Among the issues raised by father before the magistrate regarding child support were whether the facts supported a deviation from the child support guidelines and whether the child support guidelines operated so as to treat each parent fairly with respect to such issues as housing costs across the state, age of parties' children, tax filing status of parents, and benefits incident to employment enjoyed by some parents such as health insurance and cafeteria plans. The magistrate determined that the facts did not support a deviation from the guidelines. Furthermore, the magistrate stated that she could not determine what the asserted flaws in the guidelines were from father's submissions and, therefore, she would not deviate from the guidelines on that basis either. The magistrate issued a final child support order on May 4, 1999 requiring father to pay $546.45 in monthly support during the school year and $253.89 in monthly support during the summer months. Father did not appeal from this order.

With the exception of July, father never paid the full amount ordered by the magistrate, and in October 1999 mother pursued an enforcement action through the Office of Child Support. Another hearing was held before a magistrate at which both parties appeared pro se. In opposition to the enforcement action father argued that he and mother had verbally agreed to modify his support obligation and to waive arrears accruing before September, that he lacked the ability to meet his support obligation and that the magistrate's findings in its May 1999 order were erroneous. He also again attacked the methodology for calculating child support under the guidelines for its disparate treatment...

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3 practice notes
  • Bergman v. Marker, No. 06-079.
    • United States
    • Vermont United States State Supreme Court of Vermont
    • December 21, 2007
    ...parent's inaction does not bind the child for whose benefit the child-support order is made. See also Stein v. Stein, 173 Vt. 627, 629, 800 A.2d 460, 463 (2002) (mem.) (parent cannot waive right to support arrears 944 A.2d 269 on child's behalf); St. Hilaire v. DeBlois, 168 Vt. 445, 448, 72......
  • Schaad v. BELL ATLANTIC NYNEX, No. 01-004.
    • United States
    • Vermont United States State Supreme Court of Vermont
    • April 15, 2002
    ...of this evidence because the trial memorandum was written to address a hypothetical, had little probative value, and tended to confuse the 800 A.2d 460 jury. The trial court was well within its discretion to limit the scope of cross-examination, and where the evidence is marginally probativ......
  • Adamson v. Dodge, No. 05-255.
    • United States
    • Vermont United States State Supreme Court of Vermont
    • August 24, 2006
    ...regarding parental rights and responsibilities, father has waived his right to now contest the result. Stein v. Stein, 73 Vt. 627, 628, 800 A.2d 460, 462 (2002) (mem.). Accordingly, the only issues before this Court are those raised in response to the family court rulings of June 3, ¶ 5. Fa......
3 cases
  • Bergman v. Marker, No. 06-079.
    • United States
    • Vermont United States State Supreme Court of Vermont
    • December 21, 2007
    ...parent's inaction does not bind the child for whose benefit the child-support order is made. See also Stein v. Stein, 173 Vt. 627, 629, 800 A.2d 460, 463 (2002) (mem.) (parent cannot waive right to support arrears 944 A.2d 269 on child's behalf); St. Hilaire v. DeBlois, 168 Vt. 445, 448, 72......
  • Schaad v. BELL ATLANTIC NYNEX, No. 01-004.
    • United States
    • Vermont United States State Supreme Court of Vermont
    • April 15, 2002
    ...of this evidence because the trial memorandum was written to address a hypothetical, had little probative value, and tended to confuse the 800 A.2d 460 jury. The trial court was well within its discretion to limit the scope of cross-examination, and where the evidence is marginally probativ......
  • Adamson v. Dodge, No. 05-255.
    • United States
    • Vermont United States State Supreme Court of Vermont
    • August 24, 2006
    ...regarding parental rights and responsibilities, father has waived his right to now contest the result. Stein v. Stein, 73 Vt. 627, 628, 800 A.2d 460, 462 (2002) (mem.). Accordingly, the only issues before this Court are those raised in response to the family court rulings of June 3, ¶ 5. Fa......

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