Lisa Dunn, respondent, v. Michael Dunn, appellant.

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Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department, New York.

Lisa Dunn, respondent, v. Michael Dunn, appellant.

2012–06096 (Index No. 201170/10)

Decided: April 30, 2014

PETER B. SKELOS, J.P. LEONARD B. AUSTIN SANDRA L. SGROI HECTOR D. LASALLE, JJ. Wand Powers & Goody, LLP, Huntington, N.Y., for appellant. Kim Cardalena, Floral Park, N.Y., for respondent.

Submitted—March 20, 2014

DECISION & ORDER

In an action for divorce and ancillary relief, the defendant appeals from an order of the Supreme Court, Nassau County (Bruno, J.), dated May 31, 2012, which, after a hearing, granted the plaintiff's motion for an award of counsel fees.

ORDERED that the order is affirmed, with costs.

An award of reasonable counsel fees in a matrimonial action is a matter within the discretion of the trial court (see Domestic Relations Law § 237;  DeCabrera v. Cabrera–Rosete, 70 N.Y.2d 879, 881;  O'Shea v. O'Shea, 93 N.Y.2d 187, 190).   In determining a motion for such fees, the trial court must consider, inter alia, the relative financial circumstances of the parties (see Guzzo v. Guzzo, 110 AD3d 765;  Sotnik v. Zavilyansky, 101 AD3d 1102;  Chaudry v. Chaudry, 95 AD3d 1058;  Siskind v. Siskind, 89 AD3d 832;  Raynor v. Raynor, 68 AD3d 835, 839).

Here, the Supreme Court based its award of counsel fees on the disparity in the parties' income.   Further, the defendant's testimony at the hearing regarding his employment and other financial matters was of questionable credibility.   Under these and other circumstances, the award of counsel fees was a provident exercise of discretion (see Guzzo v. Guzzo, 110 AD3d 765;  Sotnik v. Zavilyansky, 101 AD3d 1102;  Chaudry v. Chaudry, 95 AD3d 1058;  Siskind v. Siskind, 89 AD3d 832;  Raynor v. Raynor, 68 AD3d at 839).

SKELOS, J.P., AUSTIN, SGROI and LASALLE, JJ., concur.

ENTER:

Aprilanne Agostino

Clerk of the Court

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