Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Pope-Clifton v. Decatur Earthmover Credit Union

February 7, 2005

IN RE: THE MARRIAGE OF DORA A. POPE-CLIFTON, N/K/A DORA A. POPE-GRUBB, PETITIONER-APPELLEE,
v.
DECATUR EARTHMOVER CREDIT UNION, AN ILLINOIS CREDIT UNION, RESPONDENT, AND WALTER S. CLIFTON, RESPONDENT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from Circuit Court of Macon County. No. 02D424. Honorable John K. Greanias, Judge Presiding.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Presiding Justice Cook

Respondent, Walter S. Clifton, appeals from the trial court's judgment that a bank account containing only funds received as Veterans' Administration disability benefits was not exempt from collection to pay a judgment for child support, maintenance, and attorney fees and court costs arising from a domestic relations cause of action. We affirm.

[9]     Respondent and petitioner, Dora A. Pope-Clifton, now known as Dora A. Pope-Grubb, were divorced in Champaign County in 1989. Respondent was ordered to pay child support, which was modified in 1991, requiring respondent to pay $935 per month in child support. On February 26, 1992, respondent was found to be in indirect civil contempt for failure to comply with the support order, and all other previous orders were reaffirmed.

In August 2000, after eight years of inactivity in the case, petitioner filed petitions for review of child support and for rule to show cause. At the hearing on August 16, 2000, respondent appeared by counsel, who stated respondent was unable to attend because he was undergoing treatment at the Veterans' Administration Hospital in Danville. On November 2, 2000, the trial court found respondent's failure to pay child support was willful and without any legal justification and held respondent in indirect civil contempt. The court entered judgment in the amount of $31,665.50 representing unpaid child support and maintenance owed by respondent to petitioner and additionally awarded $2,955.51 in attorney fees and court costs to be paid by respondent.

On August 16, 2002, petitioner filed in the circuit court of Macon County a certified copy of the docket sheet of the Champaign County proceedings and a citation to discover assets against Earthmover Credit Union (Earthmover), which is located in Decatur. Earthmover subsequently notified petitioner that it was holding $26,711.01 for respondent in an account at its bank. The Macon County court froze the assets held at Earthmover. On March 17, 2004, the court found the citation was a supplemental proceeding to collect a judgment for child support, maintenance, and attorney fees and court costs arising from a domestic relations cause of action. The court further found that the funds in the Earthmover account were not exempt under section 12-1001(g) of the Code of Civil Procedure (Civil Procedure Code) (735 ILCS 5/ 12-1001(g) (West 2002)) and ordered Earthmover to turn over the account to petitioner. This appeal followed.

On appeal, respondent argues that (1) the Macon County court did not have subject-matter jurisdiction, (2) the Earthmover account was exempt under the Civil Procedure Code, and (3) the Earthmover account was exempt under federal law. We affirm.

We first examine respondent's argument that the circuit court of Macon County did not have subject-matter jurisdiction in the present case. Respondent argues that the procedures of Supreme Court Rule 277 (134 Ill. 2d R. 277) were not followed in bringing supplemental proceedings against Earthmover in Macon County. Specifically, respondent alleges that petitioner did not have leave of the court to bring multiple citations in this matter, no transcript of the original judgment was filed, and the citation ignored amounts already paid by respondent in satisfaction of the judgment. We find no merit in respondent's arguments.

Nothing in the record suggests that petitioner had filed a previous supplementary proceeding against Earthmover. Rule 277(a) only requires leave of the court if there have been prior supplementary proceedings filed against a party. 134 Ill. 2d R. 277(a). Although petitioner only filed the docket sheet in Macon County, it is apparently because there was no written transcript of the judgment to file. The docket sheet clearly shows the entry of judgment against respondent and is adequate to meet the requirements of Rule 277. See Bentley v. Glenn Shipley Enterprises, Inc., 248 Ill. App. 3d 647, 651, 619 N.E.2d 816, 819 (1993) (provisions of Rule 277 are to be liberally construed). Finally, even with the money from the Earthmover account and all amounts previously recovered by petitioner, the judgment against respondent has not been satisfied, so it is moot that petitioner sought to recover the entire amount of the judgment in her proceedings against Earthmover. The circuit court of Macon County had jurisdiction to enter a judgment on the supplementary proceedings.

Respondent next argues that because the funds in the Earthmover account were directly traceable to Veterans' Administration disability benefits, they are exempt from garnishment under Illinois law. Section 12-1001 of the Civil Procedure Code provides in relevant part as follows:

"The following personal property, owned by the debtor, is exempt from judgment, attach-ment, or distress for rent:

(g) The debtor's right to receive:

(1) a social security benefit, unemployment compensation, or public assistance benefit;

(2) a veteran's benefit;

(3) a disability, illness, or un-employment ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.