NFL star nearly lands in jail for failing to pay child support

A few months ago, we reported on the case of NFL star wide receiver Terrell Owens, who was being taken to court for back child support.

Specifically, Owens was sued by Melanie Paige-Smith, the mother of his daughter, for “fail[ing] and refus[ing] to pay the full amount of child support ($5,000) for June 2011.”

Here, Owens claimed that his child support arrears could be attributed to financial issues caused by the NFL labor strike and asked the family court judge to lower his child support payment to $2,500.

The family court judge ultimately refused this request, and Owens ended up paying Paige-Smith $10,000 in child support for June and July, as well as court costs and attorney fees.

In recent developments, Owens has narrowly avoided going to jail after once more failing to pay Paige-Smith her court-ordered child support on time.

In early September, Paige-Smith filed a second petition for contempt with the Fulton County Superior Court. Specifically, she was seeking to have Owens – who she alleged makes over $600,000 a month – put behind bars for failing to pay her $10,000 in child support for August and September.

However, the day before his scheduled contempt hearing, Owens paid Paige-Smith the money owed.

“We are glad it is resolved and hope we do not need to file again in the future,” said Randall Kessler, Paige-Smith’s attorney.

Owens, who underwent knee surgery during the offseason, can sign with any team thanks to his free agent status. However, he remains unsigned five weeks into the 2011-2012 NFL season.

Owens has played for multiple teams since entering the NFL in 1996, including the San Francisco 49ers, Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, Buffalo Bills, and Cincinnati Bengals.

Stay tuned for more from our Ft. Worth family law blog …

To learn more about child support arrears or post-divorce issues, contact an experienced and skilled legal professional.

This post is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.

Related Resources:

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “T.O. catches up on child support payments, avoids jail” Sept. 26, 2011