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Ryland v. Ryland

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Third Circuit

August 28, 2019

DARREL D. RYLAND
v.
CONSTANCE RYLAND

          APPEAL FROM THE TWELFTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH OF AVOYELLES, NO. 94-588 HONORABLE KERRY L. SPRUILL, DISTRICT JUDGE.

          Steven J. Lane John S. Creevy Charles M. King, Herman, Herman & Katz, LLC, Counsel for Defendant/Appellant: Constance Ryland.

          Jennifer J. Greene Attorney at Law, Counsel for Defendant/Appellant: Constance Ryland.

          Harry J. Philips, Jr. Michael S. Walsh Ryan K. French, Taylor, Porter, Brooks & Phillips, LLP, Counsel for Plaintiff/Appellee: Darrel D. Ryland.

          Court composed of Sylvia R. Cooks, Elizabeth A. Pickett, Billy H. Ezell, Phyllis M. Keaty, D. Kent Savoie, Van H. Kyzar, and Jonathan W. Perry, Judges.

          Cooks, J., dissents for the reasons assigned by Judge Keaty.

          ELIZABETH A. PICKETT JUDGE.

         Defendant/Appellant, Constance Ryland, appeals the trial court's judgment in favor of Plaintiff/Appellee, Darrel D. Ryland, finding that their community property regime was terminated on June 15, 1994. For the following reasons, the trial court's judgment is affirmed.

         FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         Constance and Darrel were married on August 9, 1975. On June 15, 1994, Darrel filed a Petition for Divorce. On July 13, 1994, the trial court issued a Judgment on Rule regarding alimony and issues concerning their minor children, i.e., child support payments, health insurance/medical expenses, domicile, joint custody, and holiday visitation. On August 12, 1994, Darrel filed a Rule for Judgment Decreeing Separation of Property. On that same day, the trial court issued a Judgment on Rule "decreeing a separation of property and dissolving the community property . . . retroactive to the date of filing of the Rule for Judgment Decreeing Separation of Property." The parties reconciled but eventually were divorced on February 20, 2014, pursuant to a Judgment of Divorce.

         During their marriage, the parties executed a Partial Partition of Community Property on January 20, 1995 (hereinafter the "1995 partition"), which provided, in pertinent part:

[Darrel and Constance] declare that they are currently living separate and apart as evidenced by the Petition for Divorce as filed with the 12thJudicial District Court . . . Civil Suit No. 94-0588-A, and that they now desire to settle and liquidate the community which formerly existed between them and that they have agreed to settle the same in the manner hereinafter set forth:
The parties hereto discharge each other from any further accounting to the community which formerly existed between them; the same being fully liquidated as above set forth . . . .
The parties agree that the community of acquets and gains formerly existing between them was ended as of June 15, 1994, and that each debt whatsoever incurred by either party after said date . . . shall be considered the separate obligation of the party that incurred the debt.

         The parties executed another Partial Partition of Community Property in January 2000 (hereinafter the "2000 partition"), which provided, in pertinent part:

[Darrel and Constance] did declare that they now desire to settle and liquidate the community which formerly existed between them and that they have agreed to ...

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