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Faust v. Faust

OPINION FILED SEPTEMBER 10, 1981.

MARY ANNE FAUST, PETITIONER-APPELLEE,

v.

ROBERT GENE FAUST, RESPONDENT-APPELLANT.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. MONICA D. REYNOLDS, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE LINN DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Rehearing denied October 15, 1981.

Robert G. Faust, respondent, appeals from an order entered in the Domestic Relations Division of the circuit court of Cook County directing him to contribute $1500 towards the technical school education expenses of his adult son, Mark Faust.

Respondent contends: (1) the award was improperly granted, having been ordered contrary to the requirements of section 513 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1979, ch. 40, par. 513); (2) the award was improperly granted, having been ordered contrary to the manifest weight of the evidence.

We disagree with respondent's contentions, and we affirm the trial court.

Factual Background:

After 12 years of marriage, the parties were divorced in 1971. Mary Faust, petitioner, was awarded the custody of the parties' four minor children. Respondent was obligated to pay the undivided sum of $400 per month towards the children's support.

Pursuant to court order entered in 1973, respondent was obligated to continue to pay the undivided support allowance of $400 per month for three of the children, one having reached majority. As of February 1979, respondent, without leave of court and without the expressed consent of petitioner, reduced the undivided support allowance to $268 per month for the two remaining minor children, the child Mark Faust having come of majority age.

On August 16, 1979, petitioner, by petition directed to respondent, sought claimed arrearages of support, an increase in the support for the two remaining minors and an order obligating respondent to pay a share of Mark Faust's education expenses in the automotive technician training course at Wyoming Technical Institute in Laramie, Wyoming.

At a hearing on November 6, 1979, the evidence relating to the requested education allowance disclosed that Mark Faust became 18 years old on January 23, 1979. He had graduated from high school earlier that month. On January 24 he began work as a full-time mechanic trainee at a shop where he had previously worked part-time over the last 3 1/2 years. He had a gross income of between $203 to $217 per week, owned a motorcycle for which he paid $926 in 1978 and a 1971 Oldsmobile for which he paid $700 in 1979. While working as a mechanic trainee, he saved $1731.

The evidence further disclosed that Mark Faust applied to the Wyoming Technical Institute to attend a six-month automotive technician training course beginning December 1979. He estimated that the course cost would total $3200 plus approximately $300 per month for room and board making a grand total expense of about $5000. Travel, clothing, and incidental expenses were not included in the total cost figure.

Respondent testified that he is employed as an industrial engineer and earns $1925 gross and $1240.75 net, per month. He remarried in 1973 and has one child with his present spouse. It was respondent's contention that his monthly expenses, including his home mortgage payment of $268 per month, exceeded his net income. He acknowledged receiving $12,000 from the sale proceeds of the home he had owned with petitioner and that he owned securities worth about $500. He also indicated, without specifying the dollar amount, that he had an interest in a profit sharing and pension plan.

Petitioner, who remarried in 1975, has income of about $40 per week from her part-time work as a clerk. No testimony was elicited from her of any other sources of income or property holdings from which she could contribute to the education expenses of Mark Faust.

At the conclusion of the November 6 hearing, the trial court ordered respondent to pay $150 per month per child for the support of the two remaining minor children, a total of $300 per month, rather than the $268 per month that was being paid by respondent. The order also directed respondent to pay $1500 towards the technical school education expenses on behalf of Mark Faust. The claim by petitioner for arrearages growing out of the respondent's unilateral reduction of the undivided support payments was not ruled upon and the claim appears to have been abandoned by petitioner. (See Finley v. Finley (1980), 81 Ill.2d 317, 410 N.E.2d 12; Claflin v. Claflin (1980), 82 Ill. App.3d 246, 402 N.E.2d 673, cert. denied (1980), ___ U.S. ___, ___. The respondent's motion to vacate the order of November 6, 1979, was denied, and this appeal followed. Respondent's appeal relates only to ...


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