Law Offices of Lisa Standish

Retired NBA star seeks child support change after divorce

Matt Barnes enjoyed a successful career in the NBA for nearly 15 years. Pennsylvania basketball fans may remember when he retired in 2017. Some may also have followed his divorce from Gloria Govan, who starred on reality TV show "Basketball Wives." The two have been entangled in a dispute over child support for their two sons.  

Barnes recently welcomed another child into the world from another mother. Since his divorce, he'd been paying $20,000 per month in child support. However, he recently filed a petition in court, requesting modification of the existing plan, stating that he can no longer afford to meet the payments.  

It is not uncommon for parents to ask the court to grant permission to lower payments when needed. Legitimate reasons for doing so often include job loss or income reduction, as well as remarriages that include step-children or new births. The court has full discretion to make such decisions on a case-by-case basis although every state has its own guidelines. In Barnes's case, he told the court he can no longer afford such high payments since he retired from his professional basketball career.

The judge overseeing the matter agreed that $20,000 per month is an exorbitant cost in this particular situation. Barnes has been granted permission to lower the payments to $7,500 per month. Govan is reportedly unhappy about the court's decision. It is imperative that any Pennsylvania parent ordered to pay child support after divorce continue to adhere to the terms of an existing court order unless and until the court approves new terms.

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