Appeal from the Circuit Court of St. Louis County. Hon. George Gerhard, Judge.
Paul J. Simon, Presiding Judge, Albert J. Stephan, Jr., Judge - concurs. James A. Pudlowski, Judge - concurs.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Simon
Sharon Zalmanoff, wife, appeals from an order modifying a dissolution decree, and Norman Zalmanoff, husband, cross-appeals. Wife and husband were married in 1963. Two children were born of the marriage: Jodi Zalmanoff, daughter, born June 22, 1971, and Sean E. Zalmanoff, son, born March 4, 1978. The decree of dissolution of the marriage, granted on March 24, 1987, awarded custody of both children to wife, and ordered husband to: pay $300 per month for the support of each child and $500 per month to wife for her maintenance; maintain in full force and effect health and hospital insurance for the minor children and husband's life insurance policy naming minor children as beneficiaries; and not change the beneficiaries of his life insurance policy until the youngest of the children is emancipated.
On September 20, 1988, the trial court issued a modification order which reduced the maintenance from $500 to $150 per month; required wife to maintain health, hospitalization, medical, and dental insurance on behalf of the minor children; relieved husband of his obligation to provide and maintain health, medical, and dental insurance; and required husband to pay wife or health care provider upon written notice for one half of the reasonable and necessary medical expenses incurred on behalf of the minor children not covered by health insurance benefits provided by wife's employer.
On October 2, 1990, husband filed a motion to modify the dissolution decree seeking: termination of wife's maintenance; elimination of child support for daughter due to her emancipation; and a judgment against wife for back child support for daughter paid by husband after her emancipation. Husband subsequently filed an amended motion to modify and a motion to adjudicate daughter emancipated.
On December 6, 1990, wife filed a motion for judgment against husband for failure to pay one half of daughter's medical expenses. Wife also filed a cross-motion to modify, seeking to increase child support and maintenance, and to require husband to pay for the minor children's health insurance. Later wife filed a motion for contempt for husband's failure to keep in effect his life insurance policy for the benefit of his minor children. All motions were presented to the trial court on March 23, 1992.
Wife is employed at St. John's Mercy Medical Center. She works 40 hours a week earning $7.39 an hour. When wife's maintenance was modified in 1988, her income was $11,050. In 1990, her income increased to $14,405.00, and in 1991, it increased again to $16,422.31. Her income for 1989 is not part of the record on appeal. She testified that she was diagnosed as a diabetic after the modification order in 1988 and that her medication for diabetes was very expensive. The record indicates wife was spending $55 a month on her medication.
Husband is a self-employed mechanic. In 1988, husband's income was $18,996. Husband earned $25,293 in 1989, $26,427 in 1990, and $27,920, or $2,325 per month, in 1991. On direct examination, husband testified as follows:
Q. ...So -- So your net income for 1991 is $27,920, correct?
Q. Okay. Now what is your projection for 1992?
MS. BENOIT: Objection, Your Honor. It calls for speculation.
THE COURT: Overruled. Go ahead.
Q. Do you think your income will be -- Your net income, will that be less or more than that?
A. I'm saying this year, the way things seem to be, that, if I had a $20,000 year, it's going to be ...