Mother entered a maternity home to give birth, bringing along her two-year-old Twins. A Volunteer at the maternity home and her Husband agreed to care for the Twins while Mother gave birth and recovered. The parties agreed the Twins would stay with Volunteer and Husband for four months, which later became five months. Seven months after their agreement, Mother left the maternity home, but the Twins stayed with Volunteer and Husband, who later petitioned for adoption and moved for emergency custody of the Twins, the latter of which led to Volunteer and Husband being granted temporary custody of the Twins until a temporary removal hearing could be held. After the temporary removal hearing, the Twins were returned to Mother after having been in the physical custody of Volunteer and Husband for nearly two years.
On appeal in a dissolution action, Husband argues that Trial Court erred (1) in hearing the case after Husband, Wife, and Children moved to Texas, as it no longer had jurisdiction; (2) in the way it divided the parties’ property; (3) in awarding Wife maintenance; (4) in modifying the parties’ partial separation agreement; (5) in awarding Wife attorney fees; and (6) in refusing to allow Husband to testify as to interest earned on his non-marital retirement funds.
Circuit Court referred disputed issue in a dissolution action, including division of marital assets, to Domestic Relations Commissioner (“DRC”). DRC issued a report finding Husband qualified for military retirement benefits, which the parties stipulated were partially marital. Circuit Court adopted DRC’s report and issued a limited decree of dissolution, which did not provide for division of Husband’s retirement plan. Eleven years later, Wife moved to restore the matter to Circuit Court’s active docket to address the retirement benefits. Circuit Court found the retirement benefits to be subject to division and referred the matter to DRC for drafting a qualified domestic relations order (“QDRO”). The QDRO provided a valuation date for when the QDRO was completed.