Webb v. Webb

PETITIONER: Webb
RESPONDENT: Webb
LOCATION: Dames & Moore

DOCKET NO.: 79-6853
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1975-1981)
LOWER COURT: Supreme Court of Georgia

CITATION: 451 US 493 (1981)
ARGUED: Mar 23, 1981
DECIDED: May 18, 1981

ADVOCATES:
Manley F. Brown - on behalf of the Respondent
Mary R. Carden - on behalf of the Petitioner

Facts of the case

Question

Media for Webb v. Webb

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - March 23, 1981 in Webb v. Webb

Mary R. Carden:

The Florida proceeding was pending and there has been no dispute that it was pending several weeks before the institution of the Georgia proceeding and the court--

Warren E. Burger:

We will hear arguments next in Webb v. Webb.

Mrs. Carden, you may proceed whenever you are ready.

Mary R. Carden:

Mr. Chief Justice, and may it please the Court:

This cases arises on a writ of certiorari to the Georgia Supreme Court.

The issue before this Court is not whether full faith and credit should be applied to custody decrees in the abstract but rather whether a decree which meets all requirements for the application of full faith and credit was properly denied such full faith and credit simply because of its nature as a custody decree.

Although this--

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Ms. Carden, before you go on?

Mary R. Carden:

--Yes, Your Honor.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

How are you here?

Mary R. Carden:

Pardon?

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

How did you get here?

Did you raise these federal questions below?

Mary R. Carden:

Yes, Your Honor.

The first time the federal question was raised was in the motion to dismiss in the trial court in Berrien County, Georgia.

We specifically requested that the court afford full faith and credit to a final Florida judgment rendered just days before.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Did you cite the Federal Constitution?

Mary R. Carden:

No, we did not cite the Federal Constitution although we felt and we continue to feel that full faith and credit is such a clear issue, there is no reference to it in the Georgia Constitution or any other statute, and since it was implicit that we were referring to the U. S. Constitution, that that was not necessary.

And it was clear, I think it's clear from the finding of the Georgia Supreme Court, and of course we did raise it in our enumerations of error on appeal.

Byron R. White:

Well, the Georgia Supreme Court didn't say a word about full faith and credit?

Mary R. Carden:

No, they didn't say a word about full faith and credit although they held that the Florida decree was a final decree and then continued on to say, nevertheless, it had no effect in preempting jurisdiction of the Georgia courts.

Byron R. White:

And you regard that as a disposition of the full faith and credit argument?

Mary R. Carden:

Yes, Your Honor, we feel that that completely disposes of the full faith and credit issue since they ignored the--

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Now, you started to say that you raised it in your?

Mary R. Carden:

--Yes, we raised it in our enumerations of error to the Georgia Supreme Court.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

And what form did that take?

Mary R. Carden:

We requested that the trial court be found in error for failing to accord full faith and credit to the Florida decree.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Again any reference to the Constitution?

Mary R. Carden:

No, Your Honor.

William H. Rehnquist:

Doesn't the Georgia Supreme Court rules of practice require that any assignment of error that's not supported by argument or case citation shall be deemed abandoned?