Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. Marion
Burks, Judge, presiding.
JUSTICE LINN DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:
Respondent-appellant, George Bauer, appeals from certain financial dispositions decreed in a judgment for dissolution of marriage. On appeal, he claims as error the trial court's (1) valuation of his one-man corporation, (2) order directing him to pay petitioner-appellee's, Marian Bauer's, attorney fees, (3) order directing him to reimburse petitioner for proceeds from an insurance settlement and tax refund received during the marriage, (4) order directing him to pay petitioner's medical bills, and (5) determination to set a 10-year period of rehabilitative maintenance.
We affirm in part and modify in part.
George and Marian Bauer were married on March 18, 1950. A petition for dissolution of marriage was filed by Marian on May 5, 1981. George filed a counterpetition on October 21, 1982. On November 16, 1983, a judgment for dissolution of marriage was entered by the circuit court of Cook County, reserving certain issues for later disposition., Following a contested hearing, a final judgment disposing of these remaining issues was entered by the trial court on May 9, 1984, supplementing the November 16, 1983, order. It is from the dispositions set forth in the orders of November 16, 1983, and May 9, 1984, that respondent now appeals.
The Bauers were married for 33 years, during which time they produced four children, all of whom are now emancipated. Marian, now 55 years old, had three years of college with a major in home economics. She has worked at various jobs during her marriage, the most recent of which was as a waitress in 1982. Prior to that time, she worked as a part-time salesperson, at a travel agency, and at a travel school.
At various times from 1973 through 1980, Marian worked in her husband's business, doing bookkeeping, filing, typing invoices, and eventually functioning as a secretary-treasurer. After leaving the business, she attended travel school and took a course on the basics of operating a computer system commonly used by travel agencies. In 1979, Marian was hospitalized for alcoholism. She has since suffered relapses of the disease and continues to regularly attend meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous. She has also been hospitalized for sciatic nerve and blood pressure problems.
George Bauer has made his living as a salesman, and in 1973 he incorporated his own chemical distributing company, Bauer & Associates. In 1975, respondent went from a one-man business to incorporate with two other individuals under the name of Taurus-Bauer & Associates, Inc., continuing the same type of business. In 1980, respondent again began his own business, incorporating as George Bauer & Associates, Inc., and continued the same type of business. During this time, respondent has built up and retained reliable "high caliber" customer accounts.
Respondent introduced an expert, Arnold Horwich, a certified public accountant under his employ since 1978, to testify as to the value of respondent's business. Horwich stated that while there were several methods of valuation, methods such as book value and gross sales or gross profits would be inappropriate in a one-man business, such as George Bauer & Associates, Inc., where the business is completely tied into the abilities of George Bauer. Horwich appraised the value of the business from the point of resale value only, concluding that because it had no inventory and no assets, the business would have no resale value on the open market. He valued the business at $1,000, the cost of incorporation and the value of the capital stock.
Horwich testified that respondent has very good experience collecting cash accounts and that his clients are "high caliber" reliable accounts. After having examined respondent's books through March 1983, Horwich stated that based on a volume of approximately $120,000 to $150,000, respondent has been able to draw a profit margin of 20%. He further testified that the chemical distribution business was, generally, stable, although it fluctuated with the normal fluctuations of the economy.
Petitioner presented no expert to testify as to the value of the business. The trial court, however, had before it tax forms and testimony as to salaries earned by respondent. Additional tax forms were introduced to the reviewing court upon stipulation of the parties. This evidence disclosed taxable income for respondent's corporation for the years 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, and 1981 as approximately $30,000, $38,000, $50,000, $38,000, and $23,000, respectively. Testimony adduced at hearing revealed an increase in sales from 1980 to 1981 from $108,000 to $114,000, and a concurrent decline in the cost of goods of $4,000. Respondent testified that his then current salary was $20,000 a year.
Additional testimony revealed that respondent's corporation owns a car and three boats of limited value, the expenses of which are paid by the business. Funds expended by the corporation for these vehicles, as reflected on the 1981 tax return, totaled $12,000. The corporation also furnishes respondent with an expense account and other fringe benefits.
After reviewing the evidence, the trial court valued and distributed the marital property as follows:
Proceeds from the sale of the home $64,000.00 One-half proceeds from the sale of a house trailer 850.00 One-half value of stock 1,918.50 1978 Mercury Marquis 3,500.00 Equity in insurance policy 150.00 Half equity in IRA account 750.00 Reimbursement for 1980 tax refund 200.00 One-half equity in townhome 1,500.00 Furniture in possession 3,100.00 Reimbursement for insurance settlement 2,830.00 __________ $78,798.50
In addition, the court ordered George Bauer to pay Marian's attorney fees of $7,500 and her medical bills totaling $2,287.49.
Shares in George Bauer & Associates $66,000.00 One-half value of stock 1,918.50 Equity in insurance policy 150.00 Half equity in IRA account 750.00 One-half equity in townhome 1,500.00 Furniture in possession 475.00 __________ $70,793.50
In addition, George Bauer was ordered to pay his own attorney fees of $4,231.65, and the other fees and bills as stated above, resulting in a debt of $11,055.64. The judgment also provided for a 10-year period of ...