Court orders in Texas almost always provide for automatic decreases in the event one child turns 18, graduates high school, etc. A few cases have upheld automatic future INCREASES in child support. In re D.S., 76 S.W.3d 512 (Tex. App. - Houston [14th Dist.] 2002, no pet.) involved two parents who were physicians. The parents entered into an agreed order that provided that the father would pay $500 a month child support during his three years of medical residency and then pay $1,500 a month beginning on the date he would be expected to enter private practice. The father decided to take a fellowship after his three years of residency and he argued that his pay was a lot less than anticipated and he sought to reduce his $1,500 per month child support obligation that had automatically kicked in. The trial court refused to modify the prior order and the father appealed. The Houston Fourteenth Court of Appeals held: Automatic increases in child support are generally unenforceable ... Read More >
A divorce decree cannot order a party who wants to file a modification to pay the other parent $25,000 on the date the modification is filed or face dismissal.
Unbelievably, the trial court followed this provision and dismissed the wife’s modification suit. The San Antonio Court of Appeals did not reach the issue on whether this provision is void as against public policy and instead held that the provision violates Family Code Sec. 154.124(c) which says agreements concerning child support are not enforceable as a contract. Since this provision limited the mother’s ability to seek modification of child support, it was not enforceable and the case should not have been dismissed. In re I.R.H. and Z.T.H., No. 04-12-00366-CV (Tex. App. - San Antonio 5/1/2013). ... Read More >
Modification default reversed because mother failed to present any evidence of changed circumstances.
This case shows that even in a default situation, counsel must still put on some minimal evidence that supports the requested modification. In the Interest of A.T.A.L., No. 05-11-01666-Cv (Tex. app. - Dallas 5/8/2013). ... Read More >