For summaries from opinions prior to August, 2018, view PDF versions here.
In re the Marriage of Jensen
Elizabeth Hope Jensen n/k/a Elizabeth Hope Stulgies, Petitioner-Appellee
Noah Matthew Jensen, Respondent-Appellant
Attorney for Appellant
Meghan E. Wolf
Attorney for Appellee
Michael J. Winter
Court of Appeals
Court of Appeals Opinion
Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Pottawattamie County, Richard H. Davidson, Judge. AFFIRMED. Considered by Danilson, C.J., and Vogel and Tabor, JJ. Opinion by Vogel, J. (15 pages)
Noah Jensen appeals from the decree dissolving his marriage to Elizabeth (Beth) Stulgies, which modified certain provisions contained in the parties’ separate maintenance decree. Noah argues the district court acted improperly by treating the petition as a modification, finding a substantial change in circumstances, modifying the custody and care provisions to award joint legal custody and physical care to Beth, and ordering him to pay child support. He also contends the district court should not have found Beth and her witnesses credible, failed to give proper weight to his expert witness, and decided the issues based on religious grounds. OPINION HOLDS: We agree with the court’s treatment of the petition as a modification and its determinations of witness credibility, and we find the court did not improperly consider religion. We also agree Beth showed a substantial change in circumstances warranting modification, and we agree with the court’s awards of joint legal custody, physical care, and child support. Finally, we award appellate attorney fees to Beth.