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Mottley v. Mottley

January 28, 1999

REED RICKMAN MOTTLEY
v.
REBECCA COCHRAN MOTTLEY



Before Pittman, P.j., Smith And Mills, JJ.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Mills, Justice

DATE OF JUDGMENT: October 8, 1997

TRIAL JUDGE: HON. JAMES H. C. THOMAS, JR.

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: FORREST COUNTY CHANCERY COURT

NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - DOMESTIC RELATIONS

DISPOSITION: AFFIRMED - January 28, 1999

MOTION FOR REHEARING FILED:

MANDATE ISSUED:

STATEMENT OF THE CASE

¶1. This case deals with the interpretation of a property settlement and child custody agreement. Dr. Reed Rickman Mottley claims that he is not responsible for payment of half of his son's educational expenses since his son has attained the age of 21. On October 8, 1997, the Forrest County Chancery Court found Dr. Mottley in contempt and awarded Ms. Rebecca Mottley, his former spouse, $3,555.06 in educational expenses for Brent Douglas Mottley and $1000 in attorney's fees. Dr. Mottley appeals from this judgment and assigns the following as error:

WHETHER DR. MOTTLEY SHOULD HAVE BEEN ORDERED TO PAY THE COLLEGE EXPENSES OF HIS TWENTY-FOUR YEAR OLD CHILD.

DISCUSSION

¶2. Dr. Motley asserts he should not be obligated to pay half his son's college expenses since his son has attained the age of 21. Brent Douglas Mottley is now 24. Ms. Mottley submits that Dr. Mottley is responsible for half of Brent's education expenses due to their property settlement agreement dated August 28, 1985. The property settlement agreement states in pertinent part:

SEVENTH: "Dr. Reed Rickman Mottley agrees that he will pay all educational expenses of Emily Renee Mottley and McCabe Toler Mottley and one-half of all educational expenses for Brent Douglas Mottley, subject to Paragraph Eleventh hereof. The parties acknowledge that if Dr. Reed Rickman Mottley remains employed at the University of Southern Mississippi, most of the tuition costs for the children would be automatically paid; but the parties agree that they shall not induce their children to attend the University of Southern ...


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