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Porter v. Griffin

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 08-31-2011
Case #: A146031
Wollheim, J. for the Court; Schuman, P.J.; & Nakamoto, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/A146031.pdf

Family Law: In a suit for marital dissolution, the court may enforce the terms set forth in a stipulated judgment signed by the parties as a contract.

A stipulated marital dissolution judgment awarded Mother monthly spousal support of $420 and child support of $1,056 for the three children. One child was a nephew of Father, whom the parties agreed would be listed as a child of the marriage. Father filed a motion for modification seeking to vacate the provisions of the judgment pertaining to the nephew. Mother filed a motion to find the Father in contempt of the judgment for failing to pay support and for claiming the children as dependents on his 2008 tax return. The court found Father in contempt and awarded Mother $3,000. On appeal Father argued that the treatment of the nephew as a child is unlawful. Oregon law states that in a suit for marital dissolution, the court may enforce the terms set forth in a stipulated judgment signed by the parties as a contract. The parties’ agreement by stipulated judgment to treat the nephew as a child of the marriage is enforceable so long as it does not violate the law or contravene public policy. Judgment modifying child support remanded for reconsideration; otherwise affirmed.