Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Beermann v. Jones

Court of Appeals of Missouri, Western District, First Division

July 25, 2017

TERRI L. BEERMANN, Respondent,
v.
JEFFREY L. JONES, Appellant.

         Appeal from the Circuit Court of Platte County, Missouri The Honorable Abe Shafer, V, Judge.

          Before: James Edward Welsh, P.J., Lisa White Hardwick, and Gary D. Witt, JJ.

          JAMES EDWARD WELSH, PRESIDING JUDGE.

         Jeffrey L. Jones appeals the circuit court's judgment modifying his child support obligations for his son. Jones asserts two points on appeal. First, he contends that the circuit court erred in ordering a retroactive increase in his child support for the time periods of January 1, 2015, to August 30, 2015, and September 1, 2015, to beyond October 18, 2015, because the circuit court did not have discretion to retroactively modify child support for the time before the filing of his ex-wife's counter-motion to modify child support and service of summons. Second, he claims that the circuit court erred in ordering a retroactive increase of child support commencing on September 1, 2015, and continuing beyond the date of judgment because the circuit court failed to consider whether there was any duplication or redundancy of expenses covered by the child support payment and failed to consider the child's own ability to support himself. We affirm in part and reverse in part.

         The marriage of Jones and Terri L. Beermann was dissolved in November 1998. Jones and Beermann have one child, a son born in 1997. Pursuant to terms of a previous modification judgment, Jones agreed that he would pay 100 percent of his son's college expenses.

         On January 16, 2015, Jones filed a motion to modify his child support obligation. In his motion he sought a reduction in his child support of $560 because he claimed that the incomes of the parties had changed and because the child would be attending college and he would be paying 100 percent of the child's college expenses. On April 22, 2015, Beermann filed a "Motion and Application to Hold Respondent in Contempt of Court, or, in the Alternative, Motion to Enforce the November 14, 2008, Judgment and Decree of Modification Regarding Reimbursement for the Cost of Non-Covered Medical Expenses; Extraordinary Expenses; and College Expenses." On October 9, 2015, Beermann filed a counter-motion to modify child support. Beermann sought an increase in Jones's child support because she claimed that the child was spending more time with her or at college, that Jones's income had increased, that the child's expenses had increased, and that she had paid most of the child's direct expenses. On January 27, 2016, the circuit court held a trial.

         The evidence at trial established that the parties' son started college in late August or September 2015 at the University of Missouri. Pursuant to the terms of a modification judgment in 2001, Jones agreed to pay 100 percent of his son's college expenses. For his prior military service, Jones had available to him a post-9/11 GI Bill, which entitled him to receive financial benefits paying 80 percent of college expenses. Pursuant to the terms of the post-9/11 GI Bill, Jones was able to transfer these benefits to his son. Thus, after the payments from the post-9/11 GI Bill, Jones was responsible for paying the remaining 20 percent of his son's college expenses, which amounted to $4, 355.

         At trial, Jones submitted a Form 14, which showed his monthly income as $11, 835, Beermann's monthly income as $11, 030, $96 as the cost of health insurance provided by Beermann for the child, and a presumed child support amount of $1, 006 monthly.

         Jones presented two options for the circuit court to consider regarding his child support obligation. First, he requested that the court reduce his Form 14 amount by his monthly out-of-pocket contribution of $363 for his son's college expenses and by a monthly amount of $484, which represented the amount that Jones felt his son should be required to pay for his own support. In other words, Jones requested that the circuit court set his monthly child support amount at $158.[1]

         For the second option, Jones requested that the circuit court consider utilizing the Form 14 amount of $1, 006 for a period of 4 months, which represented the months during which his son would presumably reside at Beermann's residence during summer, winter, and holiday breaks for a total of $4, 024, and prorate that amount for 12 months for a monthly child support obligation of $335 per month, which would be in addition to his obligation to pay his son's college expenses.

         Jones testified that his child support obligation should be reduced because he is paying 100 percent of his son's college expenses and asked that the reduced child support payments be retroactive to the beginning of the fall 2015 school year.

         Beermann testified that her son would be at school 63.8 percent of the time and that the remaining time her son would live with her. Beermann said that she believed that the variable expenses portion of the child support should be reduced by 63.8 percent because of the time that her son would be living at college and not with her. Although Jones testified that he had received information that his son would be leasing an apartment and not going home to live with Beermann for the summer, Beermann said that her son was going to sub-let the apartment and return home to live with her for the summer. Beermann said that her son was "absolutely" planning on being home during the summer.

         On June 29, 2016, the circuit court entered its amended judgment. The circuit court adopted Jones's Form 14 and found that the presumed child support amount of $1, 006 for the time period from January 1, 2015, to August 30, 2015, was just and appropriate.

         For the time period from September 1, 2015, to December 21, 2015, the circuit court found that it should deviate from the presumed child support amount of $1, 006, which the court found to be unjust and inappropriate due to the minor ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.