IN RE THE MARRIAGE OF CINDY LEE HARTER AND STEVEN WAYNE HARTER Upon the Petition of CINDY LEE HARTER, Petitioner-Appellee, And Concerning STEVEN WAYNE HARTER, Respondent-Appell.
Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Pottawattamie County, Timothy O'Grady, Judge.
A husband appeals the property division and spousal support provisions of a dissolution decree.
Joseph J. Hrvol of Joseph J. Hrvol, P.C., Council Bluffs, for appellant.
John W. Kocourek, Council Bluffs, for appellee.
Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Mullins, JJ.
Steven Harter appeals the economic provisions of a decree dissolving his marriage to Cindy Harter. He contends the court acted inequitably in (A)awarding Cindy credit for half the fair market value of the marital home, (B)failing to find that a recreational vehicle, or some portion of it, was a gift to him, (C) awarding rehabilitative spousal support "in an excessive amount and for an excessive duration, " and (D) ordering him to maintain a life insurance policy to secure the spousal support obligation.
I. Background Facts and Proceedings
Cindy and Steven married in 1991. They had two children who were adults at the time of the divorce proceedings and are not a subject of this appeal.
Steven's parents owned a company that employed both Cindy and Steven for a period of time. They gave Steven large amounts of cash "to make ends meet." Steven's father also purchased a $92, 500 home for the couple in Treynor and Steven's mother funded the purchase of a recreational vehicle.
Steven's parents eventually sold the company and placed their assets into a trust for the benefit of their children and grandchildren. After their death, the trust began making disbursements to Steven of $6000 per month and, later, $10, 000 per month. The couple's sole source of income was this trust disbursement.
In 2011, Cindy petitioned for a dissolution of the marriage. Following trial, the district court divided the property and ordered Steven to pay Cindy an equalizing payment of $133, 270. The court also awarded Cindy rehabilitative spousal support of $3500 per month for one hundred and twenty months, with the payments to "immediately cease" upon the death of either party or Cindy's remarriage. In a subsequent order, the court directed Steven to purchase and keep in effect a declining life insurance policy naming Cindy as beneficiary. The policy was to secure his spousal support obligation. The court also ordered Steven to pay $4000 toward Cindy's attorney fees. Steven appealed.