Divorce – Case Law Update – Asset Disclosure

free-vector-scales-of-justice_099380_Scales_of_justiceOn July 30, 2015, the Oregon Supreme Court published an opinion about the disclosure of assets in a divorce.  In Pollock and Pollock, 357 Or 575 (2015), Wife filed a motion to compel the production of documents from Husband, and the trial court ordered that some documents should be produced but withheld ruling on other documents to see if the parties could reach a settlement.  The parties reached a mediated agreement before trial; however, Wife contested the validity of the settlement before it was approved by the trial court, arguing that Husband should produce additional records pursuant to the motion to compel.  The trial court did not order Husband to produce additional records and instead enforced the settlement agreement.

The Oregon Supreme Court reversed the trial court on the issue of whether additional documents should have been produced after the parties reached a mediated agreement.  The Supreme Court explained that the asset disclosure requirements of ORS 107.105(1)(f)(F) obligated the trial court to rule on Wife’s motion to compel prior to approving the settlement.  The statute creates a duty for the court, not the parties, to determine whether assets have been sufficiently disclosed.  That requirement is not waived by the parties’ actions in settling the case.