IN RE THE MARRIAGE OF PAMELA LOUISE PARLEE AND JONATHAN DAVID PARLEE Upon the Petition of PAMELA LOUISE PARLEE, Petitioner-Appellee, And Concerning JONATHAN DAVID PARLEE, Respondent-Appellant.
from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Jeanie K.
Parlee appeals the support and economic provisions of the
decree dissolving his marriage to Pamela Parlee. AFFIRMED.
Phelan and Eric Borseth of Borseth Law Office, Altoona, for
M. Zimmerman of Miller, Zimmerman, & Evans, P.L.C., Des
Moines, for appellee.
Considered by Mullins, P.J., Bower, J., and Vogel, S.J.
(Jon) Parlee appeals the economic and spousal support
provisions of the decree dissolving his marriage to Pamela
(Pam) Parlee. Jon asserts the district court miscalculated
the parties' income, resulting in an inequitable spousal
support award. He also objects to the court's valuations
of property items, the property distribution, and the award
of trial attorney fees. Finally, he requests an award of
appellate attorney fees. Pam waived filing an appellate
brief, relying on the trial court's findings and
no reason to provide a detailed background of facts because
the trial court has done so in its thirty-page decree. The
court carefully considered the parties' positions and
correctly applied the law. On our de novo review, we find no
failure to do equity and therefore affirm.
Pam were married in 1982 and have two adult children. The
court ordered Jon to pay Pam traditional alimony of $1321.49
per month,  finding Pam "should not be
financially penalized for her unsuccessful attempt to
preserve the marriage" by reducing her work schedule. On
this issue, the trial court found:
In recent history Pam and Jon's work schedules were not
parallel. [(Jon worked 2:00 to 10:00 p.m. on Monday,
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Pam worked 7:30 a.m.
to 5:30 p.m. on Monday through Friday.)] Both parties
testified that Pam had discussed decreasing her work hours
with Jon and Jon agreed. Pam testified that she was concerned
that the marriage was breaking apart. She hoped spending one
day a week with Jon on his day off would be a chance for the
parties to work on saving their relationship. Pam changed her
work schedule from full-time to accommodate her expectations.
Spending more time together didn't work. Once Pam
realized the marriage was over, she asked her employer to
reinstate her to full-time. This wasn't possible because
the fulltime position had already been filled. Pam sought
supplemental employment. No other job would pay her anything
close to the $19.06 she earns in her present capacity. This
is the highest hourly compensation rate Pam has ever earned.
She testified that she didn't want to lose her higher
earning capacity simply to have full-time hours at lower pay
somewhere else. She has been diligent but unsuccessful in
finding supplemental employment because her availability is
only Mondays and Tuesdays.
The district court awarded Pam spousal support based on:
(1) Pam's recent reduction in her work schedule at her
highest earning capacity, which the court finds Jon knew
about and was in agreement with; (2) Jon's consistently
higher income during each year of the parties' long
marriage; (3) Pam's lesser earning capacity and lesser
level of education; and (4) the unlikely possibility that Pam
can support herself at the standard of living she enjoyed
during the marriage.
are instructed to equitably award spousal support by
considering each of the statutory criteria of Iowa Code
section 598.21A(1) (2018). See In re Marriage of
Gust, 858 N.W.2d 402, 410-12 (Iowa 2015). The district
court did so here, and we find no failure to do equity in the
spousal support awarded. See Mauer, 874 N.W.2d at
106 ("[W]e will disturb a district court ...