Gregory Stone Norris v. Jennifer Norris Farmer

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CA 05-416

November 9, 2005


[NO. E-98-252-2]




Terry Crabtree, Judge

The appellant, Gregory Stone Norris, appeals the judgment of $1,167.50 granted in favor of his former wife, appellee Jennifer Farmer. Appellant contends on appeal that the trial court erred in granting judgment without first holding a hearing. We find no error and affirm.

At issue in this appeal is what the parties refer to as either Accutrade stock, or an Accutrade account. In the divorce decree dated April 3, 2000, the trial court found that the account was a marital asset that was to be equally divided between the parties. The decree further provided in relevant part that appellant was to make the minimum monthly payments on the parties' credit card debts until July 1, 2001. After that date, the court ordered each party to be responsible for paying one-half of the remaining indebtedness. In addition, appellee was awarded an attorney's fee of $3,000.

In August 2000, appellant filed a petition to modify his child support obligation. At that time, appellant proposed that he consolidate the credit card debts and assume payment thereof, in exchange for his receiving appellee's share of the Accutrade account and forgiveness of the attorney's fee awarded to appellee in the decree. The order emanating from the hearing on appellant's petition stated only that "[t]he parties reached an agreement during the court proceedings

in regard to their credit card debt which was read into the record."

In May 2004, appellant filed a motion for contempt alleging that appellee was violating the court's previous orders regarding visitation. In her response to that petition, appellee alleged that appellant was in contempt because he had not paid to her one-half of the Accutrade account, which had a value of $2,335 at the time of the divorce. At the hearing held on September 23, 2004, the parties disclosed that they had settled their differences. With regard to the Accutrade account, appellant's attorney stated, "There is an issue still out there pending about [the] Accutrade stock. [Appellant] contends it was taken care of on the record in August of 2000. [Appellee] is going to order the transcript, and that will settle that issue." The order from that hearing recited that "[t]here is an outstanding issue of whether or not [appellant] has been given a credit for other debts on an Accutrade stock. The [appellee] will have the obligation of ordering the transcript of the August 2000 agreement of the parties placed on the record should she want to pursue that claim."

On December 29, 2004, the trial court entered an order granting appellee judgment for her share of the Accutrade account. The order stated:

The parties agreed at the September 23, 2004 hearing that the issue of the Accutrade stock would be decided by a review of the previous transcript. The [appellant] contended that this issue had been previously settled. The Court has reviewed the transcript and has determined that the Accutrade stock dispute was not settled. Pursuant to the divorce decree the Accutrade account was determined to be a marital asset and was to be equally divided. The value of the account at the time of the divorce was $2,335.00. The account was in the name of the [appellant] only. The [appellee] was never given her share of the account in the amount of $1,167.50.

Appellant filed a timely notice of appeal from that order and judgment.1

Appellant contends that, as a matter of due process, he should have been afforded a hearing prior to the entry of a judgment against him. We agree, as a matter of general principle. However, the record in this case supports the trial court's view that the parties had agreed for this question tobe resolved by reference to the previous transcript as to whether or not the Accutrade account was included in their previous settlement. The trial court stated that it had reviewed the transcript from the August 2000 hearing and that it revealed that the account was not part of the settlement. Appellant has not shown that the trial court's finding was in error in that appellant has not included in the record on appeal the proceedings from August 2000. It is the appellant's burden to bring up a record demonstrating error. Cassidy v. Ark. Dep't of Human Services, 76 Ark. App. 190, 61 S.W.3d 880 (2001). Appellant has failed in that burden; therefore, we affirm.


Hart and Glover, JJ., agree.

1 Appellant filed a motion to set aside the order on January 31, 2005. That motion was not timely, as such motions are required to be filed no later than ten days after the entry of the order. Ark. R. App. P. - Civil 4(b)(1).