Ronald J. Clark, appellant,
Nori D. Clark, now known as Nori D. Carter, appellee.
Statutes: Appeal and Error. Statutory
interpretation presents a question of law, on which an
appellate court has an obligation to reach an independent
conclusion irrespective of the decision made by the court
Child Support: States. The general purpose
of the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act is to unify
state laws relating to the establishment, enforcement, and
modification of child support orders.
___. The goal of the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act is
to streamline and expedite interstate enforcement of support
decrees and to eliminate the problems arising from multiple
or conflicting support orders from various states by
providing for one tribunal to have continuing and exclusive
jurisdiction to establish or modify a child support order.
___. The Uniform Interstate Family Support Act provides a
system where only one child support order may be in effect at
any one time.
___. Following the adoption of the Uniform Interstate Family
Support Act, there should not exist multiple or conflicting
support orders and only one tribunal shall have continuing
and exclusive jurisdiction to establish or modify a child
___. The Uniform Interstate Family Support Act's
provisions may only be used to enforce an existing support
order, establish a support order where no order has
previously been established, or modify an existing support
Jurisdiction: Waiver. Generally speaking,
the filing of a general appearance which does not preserve an
objection to personal jurisdiction constitutes a waiver of
Neb.App. 290] 8. Statutes: Equity:
Jurisdiction. When a statute provides an adequate
remedy at law, equity will not entertain jurisdiction, and a
party must exhaust the statutory remedy before it may resort
from the District Court for Lancaster County: Lori A. Maret,
Judge. Reversed and remanded for further proceedings.
T. Bestul, of Legal Aid of Nebraska, for appellant.
appearance for appellee.
Chief Judge, and Arterburn and Welch, Judges.
J. Clark (Clark) appeals from an order issued by the
Lancaster County District Court dismissing his request to (1)
vacate or modify a Nebraska child support order originally
issued in August 1999 and modified starting in April 2002 or
(2) make a determination regarding whether the Nebraska order
or a concurrent Wisconsin child support order is the
controlling order. We reverse, and remand for further
September 1985, Nori D. Clark, now known as Nori D. Carter
(Carter), a resident of Wisconsin, gave birth to the
parties' son. At the time of the son's birth, Carter
was not married; however, 4 days later, she married Clark,
who admitted he was the father. Because there were
outstanding birth expenses paid by the State of Wisconsin,
Wisconsin commenced a paternity action against Clark to
recover those expenses. On March 2, 1989, the "State of
Wisconsin[, ] Circuit Court[, ] Family Division[, ] Milwaukee
County," entered an order in case No. 80-641 finding
that Carter gave birth to the parties' son in September
1985, that Clark was the father, that Carter and Clark were
married 4 days later, and that Clark must pay the [26
Neb.App. 291] State of Wisconsin $2, 130 in birth expenses
payable at the rate of $43 per month.
provided in the record is a document entered by the
"State of Wisconsin[, ] Circuit Court[, ] Family Court
Branch[, ] Milwaukee County," in case No. 900-426. This
document purports to be "In re the Marriage of: State of
Wisconsin Nori Clark . . . Petitioner, and Ronald Clark . . .
Respondent." The document also reads "FINDINGS
AND ORDER" but then recites matters apparently
occurring on different dates. The top section of the document
references an "ACTION TO COMPEL SUPPORT" as of
March 22, 1990, identifies that Clark appeared "in
person" but not Carter, and provided that Clark was to
pay "SUPPORT" of $152 per month to be payable at
the rate of $35 per week commencing April 1, 1990. This top
section of the document is not signed.
lower section of the same document, bearing the date April 3,
1990, states as follows:
ADJOURNED TO: 5-24-90 at 11:15 [and] both TO APPEAR
FINDINGS: THE FOLLOWING FINDINGS ARE MADE: Parties
have been separated two years. Child was born 4 days before
parent's [sic] marriage; husband acknowledges
Mother works for Am[erican] Airlines, earning $500/ mo[nth]
gross working part time but she's been off work 3-4
months and just went back. She says she is going off [Aid to
Families with Dependent Children]. She had child in a
Montessori school but had to take child out because of
Order for support is based on husband's income from one
job: wife claims he's working a second job, but he denies
it. Husband is extremely antagonistic and doesn't want to
pay support but he's going to have to do that. . . .
ORDER: BASED ON THESE FINDINGS, THE FOLLOWING ORDERS
ARE MADE: Suspend and [26 Neb.App. 292] hold open past
support and birth expense payment in case P80-641.
Matter adjourned to 5-24-90 at 11:15 for review on support;
both parties to produce income tax returns for 1989 and YTD