Latham v. Latham
A court can find that a party who pays for the children's college tuition, shelter and motor vehicles did not dissipate assets. The parties married in 1992 and have two children. The defendant husband, 63, earns $136,000 gross per year, as a district manager at TJX Companies, plus a pension of $130 per week from his previous employment with Bradlees Department Store. The husband had a stroke in June 2011 and continues to suffer from left-side instability and fatigue. The plaintiff wife, 52, works about 35 hours per week and earns $18,808 gross per year, working with special needs children. The wife also works about 18 hours per week and earns $20,576 gross per year, working as a manager at Coastal Gourmet. The wife had breast cancer and suffers from atrial fibrillation and depression. The court ordered the husband to pay alimony of $550 per week, plus 40 percent of his net bonus, until the wife's death, the wife's marriage, or the husband's 70th birthday, whichever takes place first. The court awarded the husband the marital residence in Stonington and property in Willimantic. The court ordered the husband to refinance the marital residence and to pay the wife $33,250 for her interest. Alternatively, if unable to refinance, the court ordered the husband to sell the marital residence. The court did not find the husband in contempt of court, or that the husband dissipated assets, because he withdrew funds from his retirement accounts, after the wife filed for divorce, in order to pay the children's college tuition, shelter and motor-vehicle expenses. The husband argued that he was allowed to pay "usual household expenses" and that he previously had withdrawn money from his 401(k) to cover expenses. No evidence existed that other funds were available. The court ordered the husband to pay 60 percent, and the wife to pay 40 percent, of post-majority education expenses of the parties' children, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §46b-56c. The court awarded each party accounts and investments. The court awarded the husband the 1996 BMW and 2003 Mercedes. The court awarded the wife the 2004 Mercedes.