In re Marriage of OliverezAnnotate this Case
The parties married in 1993 and separated in 2007. Their divorce was “contentious” and “highly litigated.” In 2008, both parties signed a purported marital settlement agreement, which set forth terms determining child custody, spousal and child support, and division of community assets, obligations, property rights, and other financial rights. In 2009, husband moved to enter judgment based on the Agreement. Wife argued that the parties “never fully agreed to the terms of the proposed settlement agreement.” In 2010, Judge Morse denied husband’s motion, ruling that there was never a “meeting of the minds.” Later, the case was transferred to Judge Siegel. After a 15-day trial Judge Siegel indicated that he was going to reconsider Judge Morse’s ruling and allowed the parties to brief the issue. The court stated that the prior ruling denying the motion was “improvident and erroneous … not supported by … any evidence. No witnesses testified and no exhibits were offered.” The court found insufficient evidence to support wife’s claim that she was under duress, coercion, fraud, or undue influence. The court entered the judgment of dissolution, incorporating the Agreement into the judgment. The court of appeal reversed, finding the ruling erroneous and prejudicial to wife.