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Armstrong v. Doby

SUPREME COURT OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK APPELLATE DIVISION SECOND JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT


January 26, 2010

IN THE MATTER OF YVONNE ARMSTRONG, RESPONDENT,
v.
ALONZO E. DOBY, APPELLANT.

In a support proceeding pursuant to Family Court Act article 4, the father appeals from an order of the Family Court, Nassau County (Marks, J.), dated April 7, 2009, which denied his objections to an order of the same court (Watson, S.M.), dated January 8, 2009, denying that branch of his motion which was to vacate an order of the same court dated October 30, 2008, which, upon his default in appearing telephonically for a hearing on the mother's petition for child support, granted the petition and the mother's motion for an award of an attorney's fee in the sum of $8,500.

Published by New York State Law Reporting Bureau pursuant to Judiciary Law § 431.

This opinion is uncorrected and subject to revision before publication in the Official Reports.

FRED T. SANTUCCI, J.P., THOMAS A. DICKERSON, RANDALL T. ENG CHERYL E. CHAMBERS, JJ.

(Docket No. F-2474-08)

DECISION & ORDER

ORDERED that the order dated April 7, 2009, is affirmed, with costs.

"While disposition of matters on their merits, especially with regard to filiation and support, is preferred, the court retains the discretion to deny a motion to vacate a default where it is not supported by a reasonable excuse for the default and a meritorious defense" (Matter of Helen T. v Roosevelt B., 256 AD2d 583, 584; see CPLR 5015[a][1]). Here, the Family Court providently exercised its discretion in denying the father's objections to the order denying that branch of his motion which was to vacate the order of support entered upon his default, since the father failed to establish a reasonable excuse for his default (see Matter of Joosten v Joosten, 32 AD3d 1030, 1030; Matter of Lutz v Goldstone, 31 AD3d 449, 450; Matter of Jazel Dominique D., 209 AD2d 410, 411; Matter of Nathalie A., 145 AD2d 629, 630).

The parties' remaining contentions are without merit.

SANTUCCI, J.P., DICKERSON, ENG and CHAMBERS, JJ., concur.

20100126

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