February 22, 2012
DEBRA AMIR, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
YEHUDA AMIR, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.
On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Atlantic County, Docket No. FM-01-152-06.
NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Argued December 21, 2011
Before Judges Fuentes, Graves and Harris.
In this post-judgment matrimonial matter, plaintiff Debra Amir and defendant Yehuda Amir were married on November 9, 1991, and their dual judgment of divorce (JOD) was entered on January 9, 2007, following an eight-day trial. Defendant appeals from a post-judgment order dated April 30, 2010. For the reasons that follow, we affirm.
This is the second time we have considered this case. The relevant background facts regarding the parties, their marriage, and their lifestyle were set forth in our initial opinion and need not be repeated here.*fn1 We affirmed most of the trial court's findings, but we concluded: (1) there was a need to add $5000 to plaintiff's equitable distribution award for her one-half interest in a business known as Souvenir City; (2) plaintiff's equitable distribution award for her interest in a townhouse in Ventnor and a house in Longport had to be recalculated because the trial court "double-counted the mortgage" on the townhouse and failed to credit plaintiff for helping to pay down the mortgage on the townhouse; (3) there was a need for additional findings regarding the parties' bank accounts; and (4) there was a need to reconsider the extent to which a commercial unit designated as R-21 in the Ocean Club Condominium complex was subject to equitable distribution. Therefore, these four issues were remanded to the trial court for further proceedings.
At the remand hearing on February 8, 2010, the trial court determined that the equitable distribution award to plaintiff would be reduced by $68,666.62----from $1,268,819 to $1,200,152.38. The court's decision was memorialized in an order entered on March 3, 2010.
Defendant filed a pro se motion for reconsideration of the March 3, 2010 order. In his motion, defendant argued that certain assets, including Souvenir City, which was established by defendant prior to the marriage, should not have been subject to equitable distribution. Defendant also claimed he did not have the ability to comply with the remand order, and he asked the court to reduce his equitable distribution obligation by allocating one of his business properties to plaintiff.
On April 30, 2010, after hearing oral argument, the court denied defendant's reconsideration motion. The court found that all of the issues raised by defendant had "been dealt with before" and there was no valid reason "to redo the divorce." The trial court's decision was memorialized in an order entered the same day.
On appeal from the order dated April 30, 2010, defendant presents the following arguments:
IT WAS REVERSIBLE ERROR FOR THE TRIAL COURT JUDGE TO REFUSE TO ALLOW TESTIMONY REGARDING THE DEFENDANT/APPELLANT'S ABILITY TO EFFECTUATE PAYMENT OF THE JUDGMENT PURSUANT TO THE MEMORANDUM OF DECISION.
THE DEFENDANT/APPELLANT SHOULD GET CREDIT FOR VALUES OF THE REAL ESTATE AS OF THE DATE OF THE MEMORANDUM OF DECISION APPLIED TOWARD THE REMAINING JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF THE RESPONDENT.
Based on our review of the record and the applicable law, we conclude that these arguments are without sufficient merit to warrant extended discussion. R. 2:11-3(e)(1)(E). We add only the following comments.
We are satisfied that the remand court's factual findings and legal conclusions are "supported by adequate, substantial, credible evidence," Cesare v. Cesare, 154 N.J. 394, 412 (1998), and we find no error or mistaken exercise of discretion by the court in denying defendant's motion for reconsideration. As the court correctly determined, the scope of the remand hearing was limited, and there was no valid reason to relitigate equitable distribution issues that were previously decided by the court and affirmed on appeal.
In response to defendant's arguments, plaintiff contends there is no basis in the record to modify the trial court's equitable distribution decision. We agree. Defendant did not advance a Rule 4:50-1(f) claim in support of his motion for reconsideration, and there has been no showing that enforcement of the JOD, as modified by the order dated March 3, 2010, "would be unjust, oppressive or inequitable." Schwartzman v. Schwartzman, 248 N.J. Super. 72, 77 (App. Div.), certif. denied, 126 N.J. 341 (1991).