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MARGOLIS v. MARGOLIS (06/12/63)

June 12, 1963

MARGOLIS
v.
MARGOLIS, APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 55, Oct. T., 1963, from the decree of Court of Common Pleas No. 1 of Philadelphia County, Dec. T., 1959, No. 2489, in case of Leonard Margolis v. Rose Ginn Margolis. Decree affirmed.

COUNSEL

Benjamin S. Ohrenstein, with him William P. Thorn, for appellant.

Jerome E. Furman, with him Fuhrman and Furman, for appellee.

Before Rhodes, P.j., Ervin, Wright, Woodside, Watkins, Montgomery, and Flood, JJ.

Author: Rhodes

[ 201 Pa. Super. Page 130]

OPINION BY RHODES, P.J.

This is an appeal by the wife-defendant from a decree of the court below dismissing exceptions to the master's report and granting the plaintiff-husband a decree in divorce on the ground of indignities. The case was vigorously contested at nine hearings before the master who recommended a decree in plaintiff's favor. The record consists of over 900 pages of testimony.

The parties were married on October 6, 1950, and thereafter lived with defendant's mother in Philadelphia. They later moved to 34 Primrose Lane, Levittown, Pennsylvania. Plaintiff was 25 years of age at the time of their marriage. He contends that defendant misrepresented her age as 25 when they were married; that six months later she told him she was five years older than he; and that in 1959 he discovered that she was eight years older. At the time of the first hearing before the master, in May, 1960, plaintiff was 34 and defendant 42. Two children were born of the marriage. Plaintiff is presently paying $45 weekly for their support under an order of the Court of Quarter Sessions of Bucks County. A previous marriage of defendant terminated in divorce.

By way of establishing indignities as a ground for divorce, plaintiff testified to defendant's calling him opprobrious names and insulting him both privately and publicly. In January and February, 1957, after her return from the hospital following the birth of their daughter, defendant started violent arguments, and called plaintiff a dope, moron, fool, and jackass in

[ 201 Pa. Super. Page 131]

    front of private nurses in the household. Plaintiff's sister and family received similar name-calling. Plaintiff testified that defendant said to the children: "He's no good, he's not your father, he's a bum. Call him a bum. Tell him to get out of the house. Tell him he's no good."

In January, 1958, plaintiff's draw from his business was reduced from $200 per week to $120. Although plaintiff had given most of his salary to defendant, she constantly demanded more money, and told plaintiff to steal it from his business if necessary. Defendant often expressed the hope that plaintiff would be killed so she could collect the insurance. Defendant would frequently awaken plaintiff in the middle of the night, pull off the bedcovers, scratch him, and tell him to get out of bed and go to work. During an argument about money, in the spring of 1958, defendant picked up a knife and attempted, unsuccessfully, to stab plaintiff, stating: "I don't love you. I never loved you, and I am sorry I married you,... it was all a big mistake."

According to plaintiff, defendant called his place of business frequently and made derogatory remarks about her husband to his employes, referring to him as a "bum" and a "fool." Plaintiff was corroborated by two employes as to defendant's name-calling. Plaintiff also called three rebuttal witnesses who in general corroborated plaintiff's testimony, especially as to defendant's abusive name-calling of plaintiff. On one occasion defendant scratched plaintiff so severely that his bookkeeper offered him cosmetics to cover the marks. During the vacation period in the summer of 1958, defendant, in a rage, broke milk bottles on the kitchen floor. Plaintiff, in fear that the children would cut themselves, was forced to clear the ...


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