• Court of Appeals of Texas, Eighth District
  • 08-15-00144-CV
Appellant Stephen Aaron Bergenholtz failed to pay most of a $1.1 million divorce settlement with Jospehine Eskenazi. After several years, she moved to reduce to judgment the remaining $852,000. The court ordered appellant to pay; when he still failed; Eskenazi moved for an appointment of receiver, which the court granted. An appeal followed on several grounds, along with two supplemental briefs. One of the briefs argued the receivership was void because the receiver was also Eskenazi's appellate attorney. The court, which received the case as a transfer, found that it was bound by the Dallas Court of Appeal's finding that the relevant statute did not apply. But even if it had, the court noted, the receivership would be valid. The court found that although Tex. Civ. Proc. & Rem. Code§64.021 provides that a receiver must not "be a party, attorney, or other person interested in the action for appointment of a receiver," it also did not void the receivership as a remedy. By contrast, the statute does render an appointment void when a receiver is disqualified on other grounds. The court overruled appellant's other supplement brief, which argued that the case was moot because Eskenazi non-suited her claims, finding that the record did not support his contention. The court overruled his original issues as well. On appellant's issue that the only remedy available to Eskenazi was a breach of contract claim, the court found the trial court could enforce the divorce settlement because he did not withdraw his consent. On his issue that the order to pay the $852,000 was not a final order, the court found that it reduced the settlement to judgment and disposed of his claims for offset. On his issue that the order was stayed by a previous motion to declare appellant a vexatious litigant, the court found appellant did not properly preserve the issue. The court affirmed the trial court's judgment. Bergenholtz v. Eskenazi, El Paso Court of Appeals, Case No. 08-15-00144-CV, 5/3/17.

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