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Husband’s settlement proceeds should be included in marital pot

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The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld the decision of the Monroe Circuit Court to include a husband’s settlement proceeds from an action against his former employer as a marital asset when he and his wife divorced.

Paul Edwards sued his former employer alleging damages to his career for the non-renewal of his contract in 2006; in July 2010, his wife Zobeida E. Bonilla-Vega filed for divorce. In October 2010, Edwards’ lawsuit against his former employer settled.

In November 2011, when the trial court entered the decree dissolving the marriage, the judge included the settlement proceeds in the marital pot. Edwards doesn’t believe those proceeds should be included, but the trial court denied his motion to correct error.

The action against Edwards’ former employer is a chose in action. Edwards argued that the proceeds aren’t subject to distribution in the marital estate because the exact amount of damages weren’t known at the time Bonilla-Vega filed for divorce. She argued that the proceeds should be included because the chose in action was a property right that existed before she filed for divorce.

The trial court agreed with the ex-wife in Paul D. Edwards v. Zobeida E. Bonilla-Vega, 53A05-1203-DR-163.

“The fact remains a chose in action is a property right that comes into existence when the tort occurs,” Judge Melissa May wrote. “Pursuant to statute, a property right acquired during the marriage is subject to division as part of the dissolution. Here, there is no dispute that Husband’s chose in action against his employer came into existence in 2006, which was during the marriage. Thus, Husband’s chose in action was marital property that the court did not have discretion to exclude from the marital estate.”

 

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  1. Someone off their meds? C'mon John, it is called the politics of Empire. Get with the program, will ya? How can we build one world under secularist ideals without breaking a few eggs? Of course, once it is fully built, is the American public who will feel the deadly grip of the velvet glove. One cannot lay down with dogs without getting fleas. The cup of wrath is nearly full, John Smith, nearly full. Oops, there I go, almost sounding as alarmist as Smith. Guess he and I both need to listen to this again: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRnQ65J02XA

  2. Charles Rice was one of the greatest of the so-called great generation in America. I was privileged to count him among my mentors. He stood firm for Christ and Christ's Church in the Spirit of Thomas More, always quick to be a good servant of the King, but always God's first. I had Rice come speak to 700 in Fort Wayne as Obama took office. Rice was concerned that this rise of aggressive secularism and militant Islam were dual threats to Christendom,er, please forgive, I meant to say "Western Civilization". RIP Charlie. You are safe at home.

  3. It's a big fat black mark against the US that they radicalized a lot of these Afghan jihadis in the 80s to fight the soviets and then when they predictably got around to biting the hand that fed them, the US had to invade their homelands, install a bunch of corrupt drug kingpins and kleptocrats, take these guys and torture the hell out of them. Why for example did the US have to sodomize them? Dubya said "they hate us for our freedoms!" Here, try some of that freedom whether you like it or not!!! Now they got even more reasons to hate us-- lets just keep bombing the crap out of their populations, installing more puppet regimes, arming one faction against another, etc etc etc.... the US is becoming a monster. No wonder they hate us. Here's my modest recommendation. How about we follow "Just War" theory in the future. St Augustine had it right. How about we treat these obvious prisoners of war according to the Geneva convention instead of torturing them in sadistic and perverted ways.

  4. As usual, John is "spot-on." The subtle but poignant points he makes are numerous and warrant reflection by mediators and users. Oh but were it so simple.

  5. ACLU. Way to step up against the police state. I see a lot of things from the ACLU I don't like but this one is a gold star in its column.... instead of fighting it the authorities should apologize and back off.

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