Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Jones v. Gates

Court of Appeals of Virginia

August 22, 2017

PERRY EDWARD JONES
v.
LORI MICHELLE GATES

         FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF HENRICO COUNTY Richard S. Wallerstein, Jr., Judge

          John P. Walsh (Denbigh Law Center, on briefs), for appellant.

          Brandy M. Poss (Defazio Bal, P.C., on brief), for appellee.

          Present: Judges Humphreys, O'Brien and Malveaux Argued at Richmond, Virginia.

          OPINION

          MARY GRACE O'BRIEN JUDGE.

         Perry Edward Jones ("husband") appeals the court's failure to award him attorney's fees from Lori Michelle Gates ("wife") pursuant to a property settlement agreement. Specifically, he contends:

The trial court erred in denying [husband]'s motion for an award of attorney's fees and costs incurred in the successful defense of [wife]'s attempts to have entered various drafts of a Military Qualifying Court Order each of which were found to be in conflict with the provisions of the parties' written agreement which was incorporated into the Final Decree, where the Agreement of the parties specifically provided that, ". . . any such costs incurred by a party [in] the successful defense [to] any action [for] enforcement of the agreements, covenants, or provisions of [the] Agreement shall be borne by the party seeking [to enforce compliance]."

         Finding no error, we affirm the court's ruling.

         I. BACKGROUND

         On December 30, 2013, the parties entered into a property settlement agreement ("the agreement") establishing, among other provisions, that "Wife shall receive one-half of the marital share of Husband's military retirement accounts/plans. Such division shall be done by QDRO, ADRO, or other required mechanism. The costs of preparing the paperwork shall be at Wife's expense." The agreement also addressed the costs of enforcement as follows:

(a) Husband and Wife agree that any costs, including, but not limited to counsel fees . . . incurred by a party in the successful enforcement of any of the agreements, covenants, or other provisions of this Agreement, whether through litigation or other action necessary to compel compliance herewith, shall be borne by the defaulting party.
(b) Husband and Wife further agree that any such costs incurred by a party in the successful defense to any action for enforcement of any of the agreements, covenants[, ] or provisions of this Agreement shall be borne by the party seeking to enforce compliance. The court incorporated the agreement into the parties' final decree of divorce on February 12, 2014. The matter remained on the docket for entry of an order dividing husband's military retirement benefits.[1]

         On June 30, 2014, the parties appeared before the court to enter a Military Qualifying Court Order ("MQCO") dividing the retirement benefits. Husband objected to the language of wife's proposed order and submitted an alternative. The court subsequently entered a modified version of wife's order and reserved husband's request for attorney's fees.

         Husband appealed the court's entry of the MQCO and failure to award him attorney's fees. We held that the court did not err by including language in the MQCO requiring husband to indemnify wife in the event of merger or waiver, despite the lack of an indemnification clause in the agreement. Jones v. Jones, No. 0062-15-2, 2016 Va.App. LEXIS 29, at *14-16 (Feb. 2, 2016). We further ruled that the court did err by inserting certain injunctive provisions into the order. Id. at ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.