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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on May 27, 2014

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Phillip C. Lawrence, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Donald Lester Benedict.

Attorneys 2:

Grace E. Daniell, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellee, Gretchen Michelle Benedict.

Judge(s): SWINEY

This appeal concerns numerous post-divorce issues. Donald Lester Benedict (“Husband”) filed a petition to modify his child support obligation against his former wife Gretchen Michelle Benedict (“Wife”) in the Chancery Court for Hamilton County (“the Trial Court”).1 The parties eventually raised a host of issues about money, which were referred to a Special Master. Wife objected to certain of the Master’s findings. Ultimately, the Trial Court sustained certain of Wife’s objections to the Master’s report and denied others. The Trial Court found, inter alia, that Husband was willfully or voluntarily underemployed. Husband appeals, and both parties raise several issues. We reverse the Trial Court as to its finding that Husband is willfully or voluntarily underemployed and those issues related to this finding. We remand for the Trial Court to make new determinations on these issues in light of our holdings that Husband was not willfully or voluntarily underemployed, and that Husband’s income for purposes of child support is $75,000 per year as found by the Master. Otherwise, we affirm the judgment of the Trial Court.