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NBA star's child support dispute goes back to trial judge

Houston residents who follow the lives of NBA stars on and off the court may have seen headlines about the ongoing child support dispute involving Steve Nash and his ex-wife Alejandra. The Laker point guard and his former spouse have three children together, and Alejandra is seeking a child support modification that Steve says may end up spoiling his kids.

Nash made about $9 million last season, and his salary is expected to increase in the next couple of years. It was noted in court that both parents are quite wealthy, but according to one judge, the question of modifying the child support order isn't about simply meeting the "minimal needs" of the kids. 

A trial judge dismissed the mother's request for an increase in payments, and the case went to an appeals court in Arizona, where the children reside with their mother. The ruling from the appellate court said the trial judge is still required to consider a modification, even if the mother is already receiving hefty support payments each month.

The premise for the appellate court ruling was that fulfilling basic necessities is not the only function of child support; rather, "children are entitled to share reasonably in their parents' economic good fortune," as the judge put it.

The ruling does not mean that Nash will necessarily have to up his payments, but the trial judge will have to make a decision based on the mother's stated case.

In cases involving children, disputes over parental rights and responsibilities are common; after all, divorced parents can have very different views of how their children should be raised. Parents would do well to make the necessary legal preparations to help ensure an outcome that protects parental rights and the best interests of the kids.

Source: yourwestvalley.com, "Nash child support case remains in court," July 24, 2013 

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