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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Apr 17, 2012

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Joseph Y. Longmire, Jr., Hendersonville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Kathy Jo Estes.

Attorneys 2:

Robert J. Turner, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Kirk Alan Estes.

Judge(s): COTTRELL

Father and Mother were divorced in 2001 and Father was ordered to pay child support. The parties reconciled in 2002 and began living together but did not remarry. They had another child in 2004. They shared a bank account during their period of reconciliation into which Father deposited his paychecks and from which Mother paid the family’s living expenses, including the children’s expenses. The parties separated again in 2006. Father did not give Mother child support payments during their four years of living together, but resumed paying child support once they separated again in 2006. Father filed a petition to modify the parenting plan, and Mother filed a counter-petition seeking child support payments for the period from 2002 through part of 2006 when she and Father resumed cohabitation. The trial court gave Father credit for the necessaries he paid for the children’s support during the reconciliation period but ordered Father to pay Mother $32,886 for child support payments that accrued during that time as well as health insurance premiums and medical expenses that Mother paid over that period. Mother appealed the trial court’s refusal to award her child support for the child born during the parties’ reconciliation, and Father appealed the trial court’s refusal to give him more credit for his contribution to the children’s necessaries during the reconciliation period. We affirm the trial court’s judgment denying Mother’s request for support for the child born during the parties’ reconciliation, but reverse the judgment ordering Father to pay child support during the time the parties were living together as a family unit.