Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

In re Marriage of Milliken

Supreme Court of Montana

June 5, 2018

IN RE THE MARRIAGE OF: BETH MILLIKEN, f/k/a BETH MANGOLD, Petitioner and Appellee, And TIMOTHY MANGOLD, Respondent and Appellant.

          Submitted on Briefs: April 25, 2018

          APPEAL FROM: District Court of the Twenty-First Judicial District, In and For the County of Ravalli, Cause No. DR-13-80 Honorable James A. Haynes, Presiding Judge

          For Appellant: Marybeth M. Sampsel, Measure, Sampsel, Sullivan & Obrien, P.C., Kalispell, Montana

          For Appellee: Dustin M. Chouinard, Markette & Chouinard, P.C., Hamilton, Montana

          OPINION

          MIKE MCGRATH CHIEF JUSTICE.

         ¶1 Pursuant to Section I, Paragraph 3(c), Montana Supreme Court Internal Operating Rules, this case is decided by memorandum opinion and shall not be cited and does not serve as precedent. Its case title, cause number, and disposition shall be included in this Court's quarterly list of noncitable cases published in the Pacific Reporter and Montana Reports.

         ¶2 Timothy Mangold (Father) appeals from a Twenty-First Judicial District Court order adopting Beth Milliken's (Mother) Proposed Amended Parenting Plan. We affirm.

         ¶3 Father and Mother have four children together. In February 2014, Father and Mother entered into a Stipulated Final Parenting Plan, which was adopted by the District Court in a Decree of Dissolution issued on March 21, 2014. The Stipulated Final Parenting Plan provided that the four children would reside with Mother, subject to visitation with Father. The Stipulated Final Parenting Plan also stated that if Father or Mother planned to change his or her residence in a way that would significantly affect the other parent's contact with his or her children, the parent changing residences must serve the other parent personally or by certified mail no less than thirty days before the proposed change in residence, and must include a proposed revised residential schedule.

         ¶4 On September 22, 2016, Mother filed and served Father with a Notice of Intent to Move to South Carolina along with a revised parenting schedule which was included within her Proposed Amended Parenting Plan. Father filed and served Mother with a Notice of Objection on October 21, 2016. A hearing on the issue was rescheduled so that an appointed guardian ad litem (GAL) could make recommendations to the District Court and address other ongoing issues.

         ¶5 On May 15, 2017, the GAL filed Interim Recommendations and was granted additional time to complete her Final Report and Recommendations (Report). The Report was submitted on June 7, 2017. The GAL recommended that the children move to South Carolina with Mother and that Father have liberal parenting time with the children during the year. These recommendations were discussed at the June 19, 2017 hearing on petitioner's proposed amendments. On August 1, 2017, the District Court concluded that it would be in the children's best interest to adopt Mother's Proposed Amended Parenting Plan and allow the children to move to South Carolina. Father appeals.

         ¶6 We review a district court's findings of fact when modifying a parenting plan for clear error. In re Marriage of Klatt, 2013 MT 17, ¶ 12, 368 Mont. 290, 294 P.3d 391. If a district court's findings are not clearly erroneous, we will only reverse its decision when an abuse of discretion is clearly demonstrated. Klatt, ¶ 12. A district court has broad discretion when considering the parenting of a child, and we presume that the court carefully considered the evidence and made the correct decision. In re the Parenting of C.J., 2016 MT 93, ¶ 13, 383 Mont. 197, 369 P.3d 1028.

         ¶7 Father argues that the District Court erred by failing to adequately consider current and frequent contact between himself and his children. A district court may amend a parenting plan if

it finds, upon the basis of facts that have arisen since the prior plan or that were unknown to the court at the time of entry of the prior plan, that a change has occurred in the circumstances of the child and that the amendment is necessary to serve the best interest of the child. Section 40-4-219(1), MCA. One factor to consider is "whether the child has frequent and continuing contact with both parents, which is considered to be in the child's best interests unless the court determines, after a hearing, that contact with a parent would be detrimental to the child's best interests."

         Section 40-4-212(1)(1), MCA. Father asserts that this factor creates a presumption that frequent and ongoing contact with both parents is in a child's best interest and may only be overcome by a finding that contact with a parent would be detrimental to the child's best interest. This Court has never held that such a ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.