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In re Fischer-Stoker – Case Brief Summary (Texas)

In In re Fischer-Stoker, 174 S.W.3d 268, 269 (Tex. App.--Houston 1st Dist. 2005, orig. proceeding mand. denied) the trial court ordered both parties to deliver an accounting of their bank accounts, along with a check payable to the other party for 50% of the sums in those accounts.

The wife failed to abide by the terms of the decree. Id.

After a timely notice of appeal was filed, the husband filed a motion for contempt against the wife in the trial court seeking to have her jailed until she provided him an accounting of certain accounts and a check for 50% of amounts in those accounts. Id.

The Fischer-Stokes case did not concern execution of a judgment, which is "'merely a direction to a ministerial officer to permit enforcement of the judgment.'" Id. at 272.

Instead, the husband proceeded against the wife in the trial court with a motion to enforce the terms of the property division in the final divorce decree by criminal contempt if she failed to provide the accounting and the check. Id.

"We construe the relief that Stoker seeks as an order to assist in the implementation of the property division in the final divorce decree. . . . The order that Stoker seeks is precisely the type of order that a trial court is prohibited from issuing during the pendency of an appeal." Id.