Justice Nathaniel R. Howse, Jr.

Judge Howse Orders Wrongfully Imprisoned Husband’s $20M Award to be Split With Wife

Justice Nathaniel R. Howse, Jr.
Justice Nathaniel R. Howse, Jr.

Man Who Loses 20 Years in Prison Must Split $20M Award With Ex

The accusation of murdering an 11 year old girl,  the coerced confession and initial conviction occurred long before the marriage; but the conviction was reversed during the marriage.  As much as 10 years (if the initial arrest and time to get to trial are added up) before being married,  the husband was imprisoned for murder. However, those roughly 10 years are interpreted by the court as not counting toward the time when the husband’s successful lawsuit accrued. Instead, those years are ignored and only the time of filing the suit in 2011 is counted for calculating when the suit was considered to be marital property. Is this logical? Read the opinion below and decide whether the court hearing this appeal should follow this line of reasoning? If the husband had bought a winning lottery ticket 10 years before marriage but litigation to win the prize had to take over 10 years to initiate, through no fault of his own, should the wife get a cut of the lottery too? How would you rule?

See the opinion below:

$20M Ruled Marital Property