This opinion will be unpublished and may
not be cited except as provided by
Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (1998).
STATE OF MINNESOTA
IN COURT OF APPEALS
State of Minnesota ex rel.
Kandiyohi County Family Services,
L.E.S. as mother and natural guardian
of L.E.S., a minor child,
Charles David Roberts,
Affirmed in part and remanded in part
Kandiyohi County District Court
File No. F69650364
Mike Hatch, Attorney General, 900 NCL Tower, 445 Minnesota Street, St. Paul, MN 55101 (for respondent)
Boyd Beccue, Kandiyohi County Attorney, John Kallestad, Assistant County Attorney, 316 Southwest Fourth Street, Willmar, MN 56201 (for respondent)
Laura Elizabeth Snowden, P. O. Box 242, Kandiyohi, MN 56251 (pro se)
John E. Mack, Mack & Daby, 26 Main Street, New London, MN 56273 (for appellant)
Considered and decided by Klaphake, Presiding Judge, Lansing, Judge, and Schumacher, Judge.
Charles Roberts appeals from a judgment for past-due child support, claiming the evidence is insufficient to support the judgment. The evidence undisputedly establishes that Roberts failed to pay approximately $5,756 in court-ordered child support. The state concedes an arithmetic error amounting to less than $200. We affirm and remand for calculation and correction of judgment.
In August 1997, Kandiyohi County district court adjudicated Charles Roberts the father of a child born July 14, 1994. The court ordered Roberts to pay Kandiyohi County Family Services $134 monthly child support beginning September 1, 1997, and an additional $50 each month for health-insurance premium reimbursement.
The record shows that over the next two years, Roberts did not meet his monthly obligation for child support and premium reimbursement. To enforce the obligation, Kandiyohi County moved to reduce the unpaid amounts to judgment. The county also moved for a finding of civil contempt on Roberts’ failure to make timely payments. After negotiations between Roberts and the county, Roberts signed a repayment agreement in December 1999 in which he agreed to make monthly payments of $224.40 toward current and past-due child support and premium-reimbursement obligations.
Roberts did not comply with the terms of the repayment agreement. As a result, Kandiyohi County renewed its motion to reduce past-due obligations to judgment and for a civil-contempt order. At a hearing on the motion, Roberts and a child-support officer testified, and the county submitted an affidavit of nonpayment prepared by another child-support officer. The affidavit, received in evidence, listed the past-due monthly obligations from September 1997 through February 2000 totaling $5,756.46. Roberts testified that this amount was “probably pretty accurate.”
By order filed February 24, 2000, the district court entered judgment for past-due child support and premium reimbursement in the amount of $5,756.46. The district court also found Roberts in civil contempt and ordered incarceration, but stayed the contempt order to give Roberts an opportunity to purge the contempt conditions. Roberts appealed from the $5,756.46 judgment and from the contempt order. On April 25, 2000, a special-term panel of this court severed the contempt provision from this appeal because it did not constitute a final appealable order. Consequently, the only issue properly raised in this appeal is whether the evidence is sufficient to support the $5,756.46 judgment for past-due child support.
On appeal from judgment, the only questions for review are whether the evidence sustains the findings of fact and whether the findings of fact sustain the conclusions of law and judgment. Gruenhagen v. Larson, 310 Minn. 454, 458, 246 N.W.2d 565, 569 (1976).
If an obligor fails to make a required child-support payment, the arrearage, by operation of law, becomes a judgment on which interest accrues. Minn. Stat. §§ 257.66, subd. 5 (1998), 548.091, subd. 1a (Supp. 1999). To docket a judgment, the obligee files an affidavit with the court administrator to verify the child-support obligation and the amount in arrears. Minn. Stat. § 548.091, subd. 2a (Supp. 1999). Upon receipt of the proper documents and unless the obligor requests a hearing to show that the amounts have been paid, the court administrator enters judgment on the past-due child support. Id. at subd. 3a (Supp. 1999).
Kandiyohi County, rather than applying for judgment through the court administrator, moved in district court to enter judgment on the past-due obligations. At the evidentiary hearing, Roberts and a child-support officer testified, and the county submitted an affidavit from another child-support officer that outlined the total amount of the past-due obligations. The court admitted the affidavit into evidence, and Roberts conceded that this amount was “probably pretty accurate.” Although he claimed he had made additional payments that reduced this amount, he did not produce proof of these alleged payments and freely admitted that the alleged payments were less than the amount he promised to pay under the repayment agreement. The evidence at the hearing, particularly the arrearages affidavit, was sufficient to satisfy the requirements of the statutory provisions. See Minn. Stat. § 548.091, subd. 2a, 3a. At oral argument, the county acknowledged, however, an arithmetic error in the calculation of the judgment amount.
Roberts contends that the burden of proof should be higher when the district court, rather than the court administrator, considers a motion to enter judgment on past-due child support. But Roberts has provided no support for this argument, and nothing in the statutory provisions suggests that a different standard applies. See Tinsley v. Tinsley, 427 N.W.2d 739, 741 (Minn. App. 1988) (noting there is no reason for applying a “more stringent standard” when the district court, rather than the court administrator, enters judgment on past-due child support).
Affirmed in part and remanded in part.