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NORINA D. PAUL v. THEODORE R. PAUL. APPEAL THEODORE R. PAUL AT NO. 10. APPEAL NORINA D. PAUL AT NO. 53 (09/19/80)

filed: September 19, 1980.

NORINA D. PAUL
v.
THEODORE R. PAUL. APPEAL OF THEODORE R. PAUL AT NO. 10. APPEAL OF NORINA D. PAUL AT NO. 53



Nos. 10 and 53 April Term 1979, Appeals from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Family Division, Nos. D 2861 of 1974 and 1586 of October Term 1974.

COUNSEL

Harry J. Gruener, Pittsburgh, for Theodore R. Paul, appellant at No. 10 and appellee at No. 53.

Joseph M. Wymard, Pittsburgh, for Norina D. Paul, appellant at No. 53 and appellee at No. 10.

Spaeth, Wickersham and Lipez, JJ.

Author: Spaeth

[ 281 Pa. Super. Page 203]

The parties in this domestic relations case have filed cross-appeals. For the reasons stated below, we quash both appeals.

[ 281 Pa. Super. Page 204]

In the fall of 1974, Norina Paul filed three lawsuits in the lower court against her husband, Ted Paul-one in divorce, one in equity,*fn1 and one for support.*fn2 In connection with her divorce action, Norina also filed a petition for alimony pendente lite and counsel fees and expenses. From December 1974 until August 1976, however, none of Norina's actions was prosecuted, as she and Ted had apparently reconciled their differences and were living together. In September 1976, Norina petitioned the lower court for a hearing on her petition requesting alimony pendente lite and counsel fees and expenses. A hearing was set for November 18, 1976. On November 9, 1976, the lower court ordered Ted and his accountant to appear for depositions on December 16, 1976, and to bring Ted's financial records with them. On November 17, 1976, however, the court stayed its November 9 order and ordered that the

     affirmative defenses [asserted by Ted to Norina's support action] shall be heard before the issue of the amount of support, if any, will be considered by the Court and said hearings shall be scheduled so that there will be a hiatus following the initial hearing relating to the matter of any affirmative defenses so allow [ sic ] for a decision thereon to be rendered and, if said asserted defenses are not found to be valid, there also will be time for depositions to be taken relating to the financial discovery necessary for preparation by [Norina] for the subsequent support hearing.

Pursuant to this order, hearings on Ted's defenses were held on March 31, April 1, and June 6, 7, 8, and 9, 1977. On June 24, 1977, the lower court ordered Ted to pay Norina $7,500 for "temporary counsel fees," $2,500 for suit expenses,

[ 281 Pa. Super. Page 205]

    and $1,250 per month "as temporary support and/or alimony pendente lite" for herself and the parties' daughter, Samantha. The court later modified this order by orders dated July 25 and September 12, 1977, to require Ted to provide Norina and Samantha with housing, to "pay all utility bills, except telephone, and all the real estate taxes," "to pay for his daughter Samantha's private schooling and all the expenses attendant thereto, including tuition, books, transportation, special clothing, lunch money, etc.," and to "pay all the medical and dental expenses of [Norina] and his daughter Samantha through his medical insurance program or by supplemental funds required to pay for all of said expenses." Ted filed notices of appeal to this court from the June 24 and July 25 orders, but later withdrew his appeals. He also filed several motions requesting the lower court to reconsider its orders, to open judgment, and to stay execution. Ted also applied to the lower court and this court for a stay pending his appeals. All these requests were denied. On December 29, 1977, the lower court formally closed the taking of evidence on Ted's defenses to Norina's action for support, found that Norina and Samantha were entitled to support, and ordered Ted "to make full disclosure of his income and assets to determine the proper amount of support for [Norina] and their child at a hearing . . . ." Ted also filed a notice of appeal from this order, and again later withdrew his appeal. Discovery of Ted's financial assets was had, and on October 30, 1978, after a hearing, the lower court ordered Ted to pay $2,200 per month for Norina's support and $400 per month for Samantha's support, and to continue to carry Norina and Samantha on his medical insurance program. The court also filed an opinion stating ...


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