The parties were divorced on October 3, 2007. The final divorce decree incorporated the parties settlement agreement into it making it the Order of the Court, the agreement provided that the marital residence would be placed on the market for sale, and that the net proceeds would be divided equally between the parties. If the house did not sell within two years, the Husband would refinance the marital residence and pay Wife one-half of the equity at the time of refinancing. The marital residence did not sell; the Husband remarried and purchased a second home with his new wife. The new home was titled in both of the parties names (Husband and new Wife) and the debt solely in his (Husband’s) name.
The Wife filed a motion for contempt because her ex-husband had not refinanced the home and she had not been paid. The trial court found Husband in willful contempt, assigned all risk of any deficiency to the Husband, and ordered that the Husband “shall sell or liquidate all available accounts and property and shall pay down the mortgage.”
The Georgia Supreme Court affirmed the willful contempt order, however, reversed the trial court’s directive as not simply a clarification or interpretation of the decree, but a modification of the settlement agreement and divorce decree. Requiring the Husband to sell or liquidate all available accounts and property and pay down the mortgage was deemed a modification of the settlement agreement.
Equitable division not modifiable. For more information see the Georgia case, Jell v. Jett, 291 Ga. 56 (May 7, 2012).
If you have questions about a divorce settlement agreement, contempt, or equitable division not modifiable, if you considering filing a divorce, please contact the Remboldt Law Firm, LLC at 404-348-4081 for a free phone consultation.