Hines v. Carpenter, Ky COA, Damages From Supersedeas Bond Pending Appeal Of Child Support

UPDATE: The Kentucky Supreme Court denied discretionary review and ordered this case not to be published.

Hines v. Carpenter, _ S.W.3d _ (Ky. App. 2009), 2006-CA-002173-MR

The trial court entered a summary judgment in favor of Hines for back child support owed by Carpenter.  Carpenter appealed the judgment and posted a supersedeas bond to stay the collection of the judgment while the appeal was pending.  The Court of Appeals affirmed the summary judgment in favor of Hines.  Then a QDRO was entered by the trial court, requiring that Hines be paid 50% of Carpenter’s monthly benefit until the sum of $149,495.01 was paid in full, or the Appellants die, or Carpenter dies, whichever first occurs. Hines then filed a motion to compel Carpenter to pay a lump sum of $14,175 for damages allegedly incurred by the posting of the supersedeas bond.  The trial court denied the motion to compel.  This appeal followed.
The sum of $14,175 is equivalent to the 21 monthly payments that Hines would have received during the pendency of the appeal.  Hines argued the motion to compel should have been granted because interest on the uncollected judgment was accruing at more than twice the rate of the current monthly payments by the pension plan.  She also argued that the full judgment would never be recouped since Carpenter, who was sixty-two years old at the time the motion to compel was filed, would have to live another 18 years for them to receive just the principal amount of the judgment.
KRS 26A.300(1) prohibits the collection of damages on a first appeal as a matter of right.  Carpenter’s appeal was his first on this issue.  Therefore, the relief Hines requested was statutorily forbidden.

Digested by Sarah Jost Nielsen, Diana L. Skaggs + Associates