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Introduced Version House Bill 2411 History

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H. B. 2411

 

         (By Delegates Shaver, Varner and Swartzmiller)

         [Introduced January 11, 2012

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; referred to the

         Committee on Veterans’ Affairs and Homeland Security.]

 

 

 

 

A BILL to amend and reenact §48-5-510 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended; to amend and reenact §48-7-101; and to amend and reenact §48-8-103 and §48-8-105, all relating to excluding disability income received by a veteran from the United States Department of Veterans’ Affairs for service related injuries from any calculation used to determine spousal support.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:

    That section §48-5-510 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted; that §48-7-101 be amended and reenacted; and that §48-8-103 and §48-8-105 be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:

ARTICLE 5. DIVORCE.

§48-5-510. Consideration of financial factors in ordering temporary relief.

    (a) In ordering temporary relief under the provisions of this Part 5, the court shall consider the financial needs of the parties, the present income of each party from any source, their income-earning abilities and the respective legal obligations of each party to support himself or herself and to support any other persons. Nothwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, disability income received by a veteran from the United States Department of Veterans’ Affairs for service related injuries is not income for purposes of this article.

    (b) Except in extraordinary cases supported by specific findings set forth in the order granting relief, payments of temporary spousal support and temporary child support are to be made from a party’s income and not from the corpus of a party’s separate estate, and an award of such relief shall not be disproportionate to a party’s ability to pay as disclosed by the evidence before the court: Provided, That child support shall be established in accordance with the child support guidelines set forth in article thirteen of this chapter. Provided, however, That the corpus of the estate of a veteran receiving disability income for service related injuries cannot be used as a means of replacing the value of the disability income.

ARTICLE 7. EQUITABLE DISTRIBUTION OF PROPERTY.

PART 1. MARITAL PROPERTY DISPOSITION.

§48-7-101. Equal division of marital property.

  (a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, upon every judgment of annulment, divorce or separation, the court shall divide the marital property of the parties equally between the parties.

    (b) Nothwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, disability income received by a veteran from the United States Department of Veterans’ Affairs for service related injuries shall not be considered as property for the purposes of this article.

ARTICLE 8. SPOUSAL SUPPORT.

§48-8-103. Payment of spousal support.

    (a) Upon ordering a divorce or granting a decree of separate maintenance, the court may require either party to pay spousal support in the form of periodic installments, or a lump sum, or both, for the maintenance of the other party. Payments of spousal support are to be ordinarily made from a party’s income, but when the income is not sufficient to adequately provide for those payments, the court may, upon specific findings set forth in the order, order the party required to make those payments to make them from the corpus of his or her separate estate. An award of spousal support shall not be disproportionate to a party’s ability to pay as disclosed by the evidence before the court. Nothwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, disability income received by a veteran from the United States Department of Veterans’ Affairs for service related injuries is not income for purposes of this article. Nor can the corpus of the estate of a veteran receiving disability income for service related injuries be used as a means of replacing the value of the disability income.

    (b) At any time after the entry of an order pursuant to the provisions of this article, the court may, upon motion of either party, revise or alter the order concerning the maintenance of the parties, or either of them, and make a new order concerning the same, issuing it forthwith, as the altered circumstances or needs of the parties may render necessary to meet the ends of justice.

§48-8-105. Rehabilitative spousal support.

    (a) The court may award rehabilitative spousal support for a limited period of time to allow the recipient spouse, through reasonable efforts, to become gainfully employed. When awarding rehabilitative spousal support, the court shall make specific findings of fact to explain the basis for the award, giving due consideration to the factors set forth in section 8-103 one hundred three of this article.

    (b) An award of rehabilitative spousal support is appropriate when the dependent spouse evidences a potential for self-support that could be developed through rehabilitation, training or academic study.

    (b) (c) The court may modify an award of rehabilitative spousal support if a substantial change in the circumstances under which rehabilitative spousal support was granted warrants terminating, extending or modifying the award or replacing it with an award of permanent spousal support. In determining whether a substantial change of circumstances exists which would warrant a modification of a rehabilitative spousal support award, the court may consider a reassessment of the dependent spouse's potential work skills and the availability of a relevant job market, the dependent spouse's age, health and skills, the dependent spouse's ability or inability to meet the terms of the rehabilitative plan and other relevant factors as provided for in section 8-103 one hundred three of this article.



    NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to exclude disability income received by a veteran from the United States Department of Veterans’ Affairs for service related injuries from any calculation used to determine spousal support.


    Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.

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