As stated in the 2006 Connecticut Appellate Court case of Gil v. Gil, "[t]o constitute contempt, a party's conduct must be willful…Noncompliance alone will not support a judgment of contempt." In a judgment incorporating the parties' separation agreement, the court dissolved the marriage between the plaintiff, Robert Parisi, and the defendant, Kathleen Parisi. The defendant filed a post-judgment motion for contempt, order and clarification claiming, relevantly, that the plaintiff willfully and deliberately had failed to comply with the dissolution judgment including by an attempt to pay his alimony obligation with an individual retirement account rollover. The court held a hearing and denied the motion and the defendant's request that the court order the plaintiff to comply with the provisions of the dissolution judgment. The defendant appealed claiming, principally, that the court improperly denied her motion for contempt. The Appellate Court affirmed the judgment. The trial court denied the defendant's motion for lack of evidence that the plaintiff willfully had failed to comply with the terms of the judgment. The defendant's evidence of willfulness consisted of her own testimony that she refused the proposed I.R.A. transfer in payment of the plaintiff's alimony obligation because, in her view, the transfer was economically less advantageous than the outright alimony payment of $300,000 specified in the dissolution judgment. Given the evidence that the plaintiff offered to pay the alimony buyout provision, and a lack of evidence that his motive in doing so was to avoid satisfying the full terms of the agreement, the court was not required to make a finding of willfulness. The defendant alternatively challenged the propriety of the court's characterization of the separation agreement as "clear and concise" and its construction of the agreement's terms as authority for the plaintiff's satisfaction of his buyout obligation through the tender of any assets available to him. Without a reasoned analysis by the defendant of the wording of the agreement, her dissatisfaction with the court's interpretation did not establish that the court's ruling was improper. Absent unequivocal evidence of the plaintiff's willful noncompliance with the terms of the dissolution judgment, the court did not abuse its discretion in denying the defendant's motion.

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