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RUDD v. RUDD




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the Virginia Court of Appeals.


RUDD

v.

RUDD


COURT OF APPEALS OF VIRGINIA

Present: Judges Bumgardner, Kelsey and Senior Judge Hodges

Record No. 0694-03-2

STEPHEN W. RUDD

v.

REGINA A. RUDD, A/K/A

REGINA A. WINDSOR

 

MEMORANDUM OPINION[1]PER
CURIAM

NOVEMBER 12, 2003

FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF HENRICO COUNTY

George F. Tidey, Judge

(Andrea C. Long; Boone, Beale, Cosby & Long, on brief), for

appellant. Appellant submitting on brief.

(Regina A. Windsor, on brief, pro se). Appellee submitting on
brief.

Stephen W. Rudd (husband) appeals the circuit court’s decision
reducing his monthly

spousal support obligation to Regina A. Rudd (wife) from $1,100
to $1,000. On appeal, husband

contends the trial court abused its discretion by failing to
reduce the obligation by a greater amount.

Finding no error, we affirm.

Background

On appeal, we view the evidence and all reasonable inferences in
the light most favorable

to appellee as the party prevailing below. See McGuire v.
McGuire, 10 Va. App. 248, 250,

391 S.E.2d 344, 346 (1990).

The parties married on May 1, 1976 and were divorced by final
decree dated June 21,

2001. The final decree awarded wife spousal support in the
amount of $1,100 per month. In

August 2002, husband filed a motion to reinstate, seeking a
reduction in his support obligation,

alleging two material changes in circumstances.

First, husband testified he lived with his mother at the time of
the divorce and has

subsequently purchased a home with mortgage payments of $625 per
month. Second, he argued

that at the time of the spousal support award, wife did not
work. She has since obtained full time

employment.

Wife’s income and expenses exhibit demonstrated her net
monthly income, including

spousal support, was $2,717.54. Her claimed monthly expenses
totaled $3,075.96. Wife

testified she has worked full time since July 18, 2000, before
the date of the original support

award. She further testified her income has not increased since
that time. Husband listed his net

monthly income as $2,492.52 with a monthly surplus of $958.19.

Following a February 10, 2003 hearing, the trial court reduced
husband’s obligation by

$100 per month.

Analysis

A party seeking modification of spousal support pursuant to Code
? 20-109, bears the

burden of proving "both a material change in circumstances
and that this change warrants a

modification of support." Schoenwetter v. Schoenwetter, 8
Va. App. 601, 605, 383 S.E.2d 28,

30 (1989). "The material change ‘must bear upon the
financial needs of the dependent spouse or

the ability of the supporting spouse to pay.’" Street v.
Street, 25 Va. App. 380, 386, 488 S.E.2d

665, 668 (1997) (en banc) (citation omitted). In
addition, "[t]he material change in

circumstances must have occurred after the most recent judicial
review of the award . . . ."

Moreno v. Moreno, 24 Va. App. 190, 195, 480 S.E.2d 792, 795
(1997). "The determination

whether a spouse is entitled to [a reduction or increase in
spousal] support, and if so how much,

is a matter within the discretion of the [trial] court and will
not be disturbed on appeal unless it is

clear that some injustice has been done." Dukelow v.
Dukelow, 2 Va. App. 21, 27, 341 S.E.2d

208, 211 (1986).

The trial court reviewed the evidence and determined the alleged
changed circumstances

did not warrant a significant decrease in husband’s support
obligation. The court did not abuse

its discretion in reducing the support amount by only $100 per
month.

Accordingly, we affirm the decision of the trial court.

Affirmed.

 

FOOTNOTES:

[1]Pursuant to
Code ? 17.1-413, this opinion is not designated for publication.

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