Shawn E. on behalf of Grace E., a minor child, appellant,
Dlane S. and State of Nebraska, appellees.
1. Jurisdiction: Appeal and
Error. A jurisdictional question which does not
involve a factual dispute is determined by an appellate court
as a matter of law.
Moot Question: Appeal and Error. An
appellate court may choose to review an otherwise moot case
under the public interest exception if it involves a matter
affecting the public interest or when other rights or
liabilities may be affected by its determination.
Moot Question: Words and Phrases. The public
interest exception requires a consideration of the public or
private nature of the question presented, the desirability of
an authoritative adjudication for future guidance of public
officials, and the likelihood of future recurrence of the
same or a similar problem.
Garnishment. Garnishment in aid of execution
is a provisional remedy created by statute directing the
procedure to obtain such relief.
Final Orders: Words and Phrases. A
substantial right is an essential legal right.
Final Orders: Appeal and Error. A
substantial right is affected if an order affects the subject
matter of the litigation, such as diminishing a claim or
defense that was available to an appellant before the order
from which an appeal is taken.
Final Orders: Dismissal and Nonsuit: Appeal and
Error. Without a final order, an appellate court
lacks jurisdiction and must dismiss the appeal.
Petition for further review from the Court of Appeals. Moore,
Chief Judge, and Riedmann, Judge, and Inbody, [300 Neb. 290]
Judge, Retired, on appeal thereto from the District Court for
Buffalo County, John H. Marsh, Judge. Judgment of Court of
E., pro se.
R. Eatherton, Buffalo County Attorney, and Kari R. Fisk for
appellee State of Nebraska.
Heavican, C.J., Miller-Lerman, Cassel, Stacy, Funke, and
Papik, JJ., and Hall, District Judge.
matter of first impression, we consider whether a judgment
debtor who, using the procedure specified in Neb. Rev. Stat.
§ 25-1011 (Reissue 2016), unsuccessfully objects to a
garnishment may immediately appeal. Because we conclude that
a substantial right is not affected until judgment is entered
in the garnishment, an appeal must wait. The Nebraska Court
of Appeals correctly dismissed Shawn E.'s premature
appeal for lack of jurisdiction, and we affirm its decision.
State of Nebraska initiated a garnishment action against
Shawn, an inmate residing at the Nebraska State Penitentiary,
alleging that he owed $3, 097.67 in past due child support
and $2, 499.54 in medical support for a total of $5, 597.21.
It caused a summons and order of garnishment to be sent to
"the garnishee, [the] Nebraska Department of
Corrections," to recover money in its possession
belonging to Shawn.
requested a hearing, asserting that he did not owe the amount
of the judgment. A hearing was held, during which Shawn
appeared telephonically. The State offered certified copies
of Shawn's Department of Health and Human Services child
support payment history and medical support payment history,
which were received into evidence. The court took [300 Neb.
291] judicial notice of a journal entry establishing
Shawn's child support obligation in the amount of $379
per month and cash medical support obligation in the amount
of $62 per month. It also took judicial notice of a second
journal entry suspending the child support portion of the
hearing, Shawn argued that he did not owe the amount alleged
and that there was no way he could make the payments the
State claimed he owed. He further alleged that the Department
of Health and Human Services "is charging me $62 . . .