Cleckley, Justice, concurring:
I concur in the decision to remand because it is not
clear what criteria was used by the circuit court or the family law
master in declaring that the marital home was "separate property."
By remanding this case to the circuit court, it should not be
inferred that we are suggesting that the family law master or the
circuit court was wrong. Rather, we need the lower tribunals to
better explain their decision so that we can give that decision
proper appellate scrutiny. In explaining the decision upon remand,
the family law master and circuit court must understand that they
are not permitted to rewrite the statute. It is, therefore,
incumbent upon them to use statutory standards and, where
appropriate, statutory language. Under the facts of this case,
terminology such as "an enormous windfall" is simply not helpful
for purposes of appellate review.
The purpose of W. Va. Code, 48-2-32(c) (1985), is to promote equitable resolutions of disputed issues regarding marital assets. While I believe that the enumerations listed in this section are illustrative only and not exhaustive, the listing is indicative of legislative intent and the range of factors that may
be considered by the family law master in making his
(See footnote 1)
I believe there is a sound and rational basis for holding
that the marital home was not a marital asset and could very well
constitute separate property. Subsection (c)(1) states that the
family law master may consider "[t]he extent to which each party
has contributed to the acquisition, preservation and maintenance,
or increase in value of marital property by monetary contributions,
including, but not limited to: . . . (B) [f]unds which are separate
property." (Emphasis added). If it is equitable to give back to
one spouse the benefits of his or her separate property
contributions, it seems just as equitable to give back to the
spouse the contribution made solely by his or her parent. If this
is what is meant by "an enormous windfall," I believe such a
finding is neither clearly erroneous nor an abuse of discretion.
The point made by the majority opinion is well taken that "neither
he [the family law master] nor the circuit court specifically
referred to the statutory criteria set forth in W. Va. Code, 48-2-
32(c)  as a basis for awarding the entire marital residence
to Mrs. Pratt."
For the reasons set forth above, I concur with the majority's opinion.