Decker v. Decker

In Decker v. Decker, 17 Va. App. 562, 440 S.E.2d 411, 10 Va. Law Rep. 812 (Va. Ct. App. 1994), the Virginia Court of Appeals held that a trial court does not have jurisdiction to modify a support award on appeal unless the party seeking the modification first obtains leave from the appellate court. Decker, 440 S.E.2d at 411. The Decker court recognized that while a trial court retains authority to enforce a support order, it does not possess the authority to modify such an order. Id. at 412. Thus, is it not inconsistent for this court to read our local statute, section 34121, as simultaneously conferring authority on the Superior Court to enforce a child support order on appeal, but no authority to modify it. In support of its position, the Decker court quoted its Supreme Court as stating, "The orderly administration of justice demands that when an appellate court acquires jurisdiction over the parties involved in a litigation and the subject matter of their controversy, the jurisdiction of the trial court from which the appeal was taken must cease." Id.