Mironov vs. Mironov, 296 Ga. 114, 765 S.E.2d 326 (2104).
The parties were divorced in 2006, and the Father was required to pay $3,750.00 per month in child support to the Mother. In 2008, the Father obtained a downward modification of child support, reducing his child support obligation to $1,700.00 per month. In 2010, the Mother filed an action to increase child support, and the parties subsequently reached a resolution on all issues except for the issue of attorney’s fees which was submitted to the trial court by written brief. The trial court ruled that since the Mother received an increase in child support, but not as much as she had originally requested, it found that the Mother and the Father were both prevailing parties.
The Supreme Court of Georgia reversed the trial court’s decision. O.C.G.A. § 19-6-15(k)(5) specifies that the trial court may award attorney’s fees to the “prevailing party;” however, the statute does not give the trial court the discretion as to designate who is the prevailing party. The prevailing party in a modification of child support action is determined by the trier of fact, whether it is a jury, judge, or the parties themselves; the test is whether the requesting party received an increase or decrease, regardless of amount. In the instant case, the Mother was the prevailing party as she received an increase in child support, and the case was remanded back to the trial court for further determinations.