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Court upholds $4.7 million judgment in divorce case, orders hearing on stock interests

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In a divorce decree complicated by the husband’s ownership and interest in several construction and development companies, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed he must pay his wife more than $4.7 million as an equalization payment, plus any interest accruing after 90 days.

Jeff and Christina Crider were married for 27 years before Christina Crider filed for divorce in 2009. She was mostly a stay-at-home mom during the marriage whereas Jeff Crider is involved in a large number of business entities with his father, Robert, and his brother, Steve.

During the divorce proceedings, Jeff Crider was not very forthcoming with his annual income, but the trial court imputed he earned nearly $920,000 a year, so he should pay more than $1,200 a week in child support.

The case is complicated by “loans” either Jeff Crider made to the companies or his father made to Jeff Crider, money that was never paid back; and disputes over valuation of land and equipment owned by the companies.

Ultimately, Monroe Circuit Special Judge Frank Nardi found Jeff Crider’s business and real estate interests in 2009 totaled more than $11 million and evenly split the marital estate. Because Christina Crider received few liquid assets, the judge required Jeff Crider to make an equalization payment to her of $4,752,066. It would bear statutory interest unless paid in full within 90 days. To secure payment of the judgment, Nardi gave Christina Crider a security lien on all of her husband’s shares and ownership in the businesses. If the judgment isn’t paid in full within 180 days of the final judgment, then she retains ownership and control of the shares until the judgment is fully paid.

In a 57-page decision authored by Judge Michael Barnes, the COA found no error in granting Christina Crider security interests in Jeff Criders’ stock and membership interest, but it ruled Nardi erred in granting her automatic vested “ownership and control” in them upon Jeff Crider’s failure to pay the equalization judgment within 180 days.

The judges also affirmed the decision to delay reduction of Jeff Crider’s child support obligation for 90 days from $1,200 a week to $308 after Christina Crider receives the equalization payment. They reversed Nardi’s decision to require Jeff Crider to pay the $1,257 per week in child support because the equalization payment had not been made that was entered after an appeal was filed in this case. Jeff Crider’s child support obligation remains at $308, the COA held.

The appellate court also remanded for the trial court to enter amended garnishment, attachment and child support income withholding orders that comply with Indiana Code 24-4.5-5-105. The judges affirmed in all other respects.

The case is Jeffrey Crider v. Christina Crider, 53A05-1307-DR-358, 53A04-1401-DR-26.

 

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  1. You can put your photos anywhere you like... When someone steals it they know it doesn't belong to them. And, a man getting a divorce is automatically not a nice guy...? That's ridiculous. Since when is need of money a conflict of interest? That would mean that no one should have a job unless they are already financially solvent without a job... A photographer is also under no obligation to use a watermark (again, people know when a photo doesn't belong to them) or provide contact information. Hey, he didn't make it easy for me to pay him so I'll just take it! Well heck, might as well walk out of the grocery store with a cart full of food because the lines are too long and you don't find that convenient. "Only in Indiana." Oh, now you're passing judgement on an entire state... What state do you live in? I need to characterize everyone in your state as ignorant and opinionated. And the final bit of ignorance; assuming a photo anyone would want is lucky and then how much does your camera have to cost to make it a good photo, in your obviously relevant opinion?

  2. Seventh Circuit Court Judge Diane Wood has stated in “The Rule of Law in Times of Stress” (2003), “that neither laws nor the procedures used to create or implement them should be secret; and . . . the laws must not be arbitrary.” According to the American Bar Association, Wood’s quote drives home this point: The rule of law also requires that people can expect predictable results from the legal system; this is what Judge Wood implies when she says that “the laws must not be arbitrary.” Predictable results mean that people who act in the same way can expect the law to treat them in the same way. If similar actions do not produce similar legal outcomes, people cannot use the law to guide their actions, and a “rule of law” does not exist.

  3. Linda, I sure hope you are not seeking a law license, for such eighteenth century sentiments could result in your denial in some jurisdictions minting attorneys for our tolerant and inclusive profession.

  4. Mazel Tov to the newlyweds. And to those bakers, photographers, printers, clerks, judges and others who will lose careers and social standing for not saluting the New World (Dis)Order, we can all direct our Two Minutes of Hate as Big Brother asks of us. Progress! Onward!

  5. My daughter was taken from my home at the end of June/2014. I said I would sign the safety plan but my husband would not. My husband said he would leave the house so my daughter could stay with me but the case worker said no her mind is made up she is taking my daughter. My daughter went to a friends and then the friend filed a restraining order which she was told by dcs if she did not then they would take my daughter away from her. The restraining order was not in effect until we were to go to court. Eventually it was dropped but for 2 months DCS refused to allow me to have any contact and was using the restraining order as the reason but it was not in effect. This was Dcs violating my rights. Please help me I don't have the money for an attorney. Can anyone take this case Pro Bono?

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