Mandwelle v. Mandwelle (App Div., 3rd Dep’t)

Pursuant to an oral stipulation entered into in June 2012 as a result of the Plaintiff’s (hereafter “the wife”) commencement of a divorce action provided that the wife’s military pension would be distributed pursuant to the Majauskas formula.  In January 2013, the separation agreement was incorporated, but not merged, into the parties’ judgment of divorce.  Thereafter the Supreme Court awarded the defendant (hereafter “the husband”) a percentage of the wife’s military pension pursuant to a military retired pay division order (hereafter “military pension order”).

In October 2015, the wife moved to reopen the judgment of divorce in order to vacate the military pension order with respect to the Majauskas formula.  According to the wife, the Majauskas formula was improperly applied as it took post-commencement promotional pay increases into account in the calculation.  The Supreme Court denied this request and the wife then appealed.

The root of the wife’s appeal is that the Majauskas formula does not apply to her military pension.  As the June 2012 stipulation clearly reflected the parties’ agreement to divide the wife’s military pension and the military pension order clearly sets forth the Majauskas formula.