In Crowder v. Crowder, the Supreme Court has unanimously affirmed the ruling of a Fayette County Superior Court judge. Justice Robert Benham wrote for the Court.
Wife’s appeal was automatically granted pursuant to the Court’s Domestic Relations Pilot Project. She "contends portions of the marital home, Husband’s 401(k) savings account, Husband’s pension, and Wife’s retirement plan constitute marital property subject to equitable distribution, and asserts the trial court erred when it failed to identify the assets as marital property, to determine the amount of the asset subject to equitable distribution, and then to distribute the marital property equitably."
In affirming the court below, the Supreme Court notes that "in a bench trial, the court sits as the finder of fact and, as such, is charged with the responsibility of determining whether and to what extent a particular item is a marital or nonmarital asset and then exercising its discretion and dividing the marital property equitably." However, "inasmuch as the issues on appeal depend upon the factual determinations made by the trial court as fact-finder and neither party asked the trial court to make factual findings, we are unable to conclude that the trial court’s equitable distribution of marital property was improper as a matter of law or as a matter of fact."
SOURCE: Supreme Court of Georgia