September 12, 2014
Gerald Van Jones
Appeals from Montgomery Circuit Court. (DR-97-168.03).
Appellant: James E. Long, Montgomery.
Rule 53(a)(1) and (a)(2)(F), Ala. R. App. P.; Morgan v.
Morgan, [Ms. 2120101, July 11, 2014] __ So.3d __, __, *1
(Ala.Civ. 2014); and Britt v. Britt, 684 So.2d 1325,
1326 (Ala.Civ. 1996).
P.J., and Pittman and Donaldson, JJ., concur.
respectfully dissent as to the affirmance of the trial
court's award of postminority educational support. On
October 4, 2013, our supreme court released Ex parte
Christopher, [Ms. 1120387, Oct. 4, 2013] 145 So.3d 60 (Ala.
2013), in which our supreme court expressly overruled Ex
parte Bayliss, 550 So.2d 986 (Ala. 1989). In overruling
Bayliss, our supreme court specifically held that,
" [a]lthough [this] decision does not affect final
orders of postminority educational support already entered,
our overruling of Bayliss is applicable to all future cases.
Further, this decision also applies to current cases where no
final postminority-support order has been entered or where an
appeal from a postminority-support order is still
Christopher, __ So.3d at __ Id. at*18
August 2011, Gaynor Jones (" the mother" ) filed a
petition in the Montgomery
Circuit Court seeking an award of postminority educational
support for the parties' son. The trial court entered an
order on April 26, 2013, granting the petition seeking an
award of postminority educational support. However, that
order was not a final judgment because it did not specify an
amount or a percentage of postminority educational support
for which Gerald Van Jones (" the father" ) was to
be responsible. Despite that fact, the father appealed the
order in September 2013, after his motion seeking
reconsideration of the April 2013 order was denied. After
discovering the jurisdictional defect, this court reinvested
the trial court with jurisdiction to enter an order
specifying an amount or percentage of postminority
educational support, which the trial court did on April 18,
2014. Thus, at the time Christopher was decided, this case
was on appeal in this court and no final judgment awarding
postminority educational support had been entered.
explained in my special writing in Morgan v. Morgan,
[Ms. 2120101, July 11, 2014] __ So.3d __, __ (Ala.Civ. 2014)
(Thomas, J., concurring in part and concurring in the result
in part), the above-quoted language in Christopher plainly
states that the holding in Christopher is applicable to any
case in which an appeal of a postminority-educational support
order was pending at the time the supreme court's opinion
in Christopher was released. Furthermore, our supreme court
clearly stated that the holding in Christopher applied "
to current cases where no final postminority-support order
has been entered." __ So.3d at __, Id. at*27
(emphasis added). The Christopher opinion does not place an
obligation on a party to have raised the issue of the
constitutionality of awarding postminority educational
support in the trial court. Therefore, based on the supreme
court's holding in Christopher that " the
child-custody statute does not authorize a court in a divorce
action to require a noncustodial parent to pay educational
support for children over the age of 19," __ So.3d at
__, Id. at*28, I would reverse the judgment of the
trial court ordering the father to pay postminority