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Bednarsh v. Bednarsh

March 9, 1995

DAVID BEDNARSH, PLAINTIFF,
v.
CHARLOTTE BEDNARSH, DEFENDANT.



Clarkson S. Fisher, Jr., J.s.c.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Fisher

Civil Action

CLARKSON S. FISHER, JR., J.S.C.

I

INTRODUCTION

The courts of the Family Part are often immersed in controversies over orders entered by the courts of other states. Congress recently sought to bring order to such interstate conflicts by enacting the Full Faith and Credit for Child Support Orders Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1738B. The parties to this case debate the application of this new federal law to an order recently entered by this court and another entered in Florida a year earlier.

Before the court is the motion of plaintiff David Bednarsh (plaintiff) for reconsideration of the court's order of December 6, 1994, and the motion of defendant Charlotte Bednarsh (defendant) for enforcement of that order, including the issuance of a bench warrant. At the heart of the matter is an order that was entered by the Florida Circuit Court (Sarasota County, Civil Division) on December 10, 1993 (the Florida order). Inexplicably, the Florida order was not part of the voluminous materials provided by the parties prior to the entry of the December 6, 1994 order.

The Florida order was entered upon the agreement of the parties. *fn1 The parties stipulated that plaintiff owed defendant $18,000 in child support that had accumulated as of December 10, 1993. Plaintiff was ordered to pay $6,000 immediately and $250 per month against the balance of $12,000. The Florida court reserved jurisdiction "to enforce and/or modify" the order's terms.

Without knowledge of the Florida order, this court entered an order which paved the way for the payment of child support arrearages in excess of what the Florida court ordered. *fn2 Plaintiff now moves for reconsideration, and defendant seeks enforcement of the December 6 order.

II

THE MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION

A. Timeliness

Defendant argues that the motion for reconsideration was tardily filed. The motion was filed more than ten days after the order was entered but that fact is generally irrelevant since the December 6 order was interlocutory. The order may be revisited any time prior to the entry of a final order. See R. 4:42-2 ("[an interlocutory order] shall be subject to revision at any time before the entry of final judgment in the sound discretion of the court in the interest of Justice . . . ."); Johnson v. Cyklop Strapping Co., 220 N.J. Super. 250, 264, 531 A.2d 1078 (App. Div. 1987). Certainly, the ...


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