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Oregon Court of Appeals


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Tough and Tough

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 10-30-2013
Case #: A150941
Egan, J. for the Court; Nakamoto, J.; and Armstrong P.J. Dissenting.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/docs/A150941.pdf

Family Law: When there is a dispute as to the division of benefits, the Court is to look at the construction of the dissolution judgment.

Husband appeals a supplemental judgment ordering entry of a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO), contending that the trial court erred in its calculation of Wife's interest in his pension plan. Husband and Wife were married for 10 years, Husband’s employment provided him with a defined benefit pension plan. After the divorce, Husband continued to work adding value to his benefit plan. The trial court found that the benefits to Wife should be calculated from the time of retirement not from the time of separation. The Court of Appeals found that the dissolution judgment unambiguously provided that Wife's share of Husband's pension benefits is to be calculated from the benefits accrued before separation. In addition, Wife did not petition the trial court to modify the judgment based on enhanced earning capacity of one of the parties. Reversed and remanded.