Millionaire Husband Must Pay Large Temporary Maintenance Award, Interim Counsel Fees
Palmeri v Palmeri
2011 NY Slip Op 06223
Decided on August 9, 2011
Appellate Division, Second Department
The supreme court ordered husband to pay $7,500 per month temporary maintenance and $140,000 interim counsel fees.
The second Department affirmed. Interim counsel fees are designed to create parity in a divorce and allow the nonmonied spouse to litigate on equal footing. Interim counsel fees are warranted where there is significant financial disparity between the parties. Here, husband made $3 million dollars in 2008 and wife was unemployed, so the award of interim counsel fees was a provident exercise of discretion. Pendente lite awards should only be modified on appeal in exigent circumstances, when a party can’t meet financial obligations or justice requires. Here, husband failed to show exigent circumstances or that the temporarymaintenance left him unable to meet his financial obligations. any perceived inequities can be remedied by a speedy trial.