Jones (Record No. 0708-15-3, November 3, 2015) and Gregory (Record No. 1367-14-4, November 17, 2015) are bite-sized, unpublished lessons on credibility from the Virginia Court of Appeals.
In Jones, appellant father sought $371 a month of child support that he claimed the trial judge had arbitrarily denied him. Sounds like a slam dunk, right? Well, not so fast! The guideline child support presumption otherwise favoring dad dissolved in the face of his contumacious non-payment of a $1.4M equitable distribution award in favor of mom.
In Gregory, the trial judge determined wife was not credible regarding her employment or her debt, and then proceeded to award her spousal support and attorney fees. Not so fast, said the Court of Appeals: If the party bearing the burden of proof in a claim for spousal support fails to present credible evidence of her employment or her debt, then support cannot be awarded. Judgment reversed and remanded.