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Metheney v. Metheney

Court of Appeals of Missouri, Eastern District, Second Division

November 19, 2019

JOSEPH KYLE METHENEY, Appellant,
v.
MELANIE ANN METHENEY, Respondent.

          Appeal from the Circuit Court of St. Charles County Honorable Erin S. Burlison

          KTJRT S. ODENWALD, JUDGE

         Introduction

         Joseph Kyle Metheney ("Husband") appeals from the trial court's amended judgment of contempt (the "Amended Contempt Judgment") finding that Husband owed Melanie Ann Metheney ("Wife") $66, 128.70. In Husband's sole point on appeal, he argues that the trial court's determination of the amount owed to Wife was not supported by substantial evidence. Wife has moved to dismiss the appeal for a lack of jurisdiction due to a lack of a final judgment. Because we hold that the Amended Contempt Judgment is not final for purposes of appeal, we grant the motion to dismiss. Accordingly, we dismiss the appeal.

         Factual and Procedural History

         Husband and Wife were married and had two children. Husband petitioned for dissolution. The trial court entered judgment dissolving the marriage and distributing property (the "Dissolution Judgment"). The Dissolution Judgment provided that Husband was to retain certain stock options, but upon Wife's request Husband was to exercise the stock options and remit the proceeds to Wife. Years later, Wife requested the exercise of 330 stock options. Husband did not remit any proceeds to Wife.

         Following Husband's failure to remit the proceeds to Wife, Wife moved for contempt. The trial court held a hearing to determine what amount, if any, Husband owed Wife due to her requested exercise of the stock options. Afterwards, the trial court entered a judgment of contempt (the "Contempt Judgment") finding that Husband owed Wife $66, 128.70.

         The Contempt Judgment also instructed "all parties and Counsel appear before [the trial court] on October 6th, 2017 ... to determine if an appropriate agreement to purge the Contempt has been made." The trial court further directed:

In the event that an appropriate purge agreement is not made on or before that date, a body attachment and warrant [and] commitment [sic] may issue directing that the body of [Husband] be attached by the Sheriff of the County of St. Charles, State of Missouri and that he be held in the custody of the Sheriff of the County of St. Charles, Missouri until such time as [Husband] purges himself of the contempt.

         Subsequently, on November 2, 2017, the trial court entered the Amended Contempt Judgment. The Amended Contempt Judgment did not change the finding of the amount Husband owed to Wife. The Amended Contempt Judgment did not issue a body attachment or warrant of commitment. However, the Amended Contempt Judgment contained language nearly identical to the Contempt Judgment that the trial court would issue a body attachment and warrant of commitment if an appropriate purge agreement was not reached on or before December 4, 2017.

         On November 6, 2017, after the entry of the Amended Contempt Judgment but before the Amended Contempt Judgment's deadline for reaching a purge agreement, Wife requested garnishment of Husband's bank account in the ordered amount of $66, 128.70 plus interest. The garnishment was issued by the clerk, and Wife served Husband with a copy of the garnishment order. Husband moved to quash garnishment, which the trial court denied.

         Husband now appeals from the Amended Contempt Judgment. Wife has moved to dismiss the appeal for a lack of jurisdiction due to a non-final judgment.

         Point on Appeal

         In his sole point on appeal, Husband alleges that the trial court's calculation in the Amended Contempt Judgment that Husband owed $66, 128.70 to Wife pursuant to the ...


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