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Professional sports labor troubles may endanger professional players' child support

The labor troubles of the National Football League and the National Basketball Association are playing out in ways that fans do not normally think of. The labor troubles of both professional sports leagues are beginning to affect the lives of some of the players' children in terms of child support. Many professional players from the NFL and NBA are consulting with their family law attorneys in order to prepare for possible lower incomes and therefore lower child support and alimony payments.

One divorce lawyer whose clients were the ex-wife of basketball player Jason Kidd and the former mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani says professional sports is like any other industry and when the industry is in trouble workers in the industry begin to have problems meeting their obligations. He says the thing to do is to file for a child support modification that reflects current or future income.

The NBA's players union has provided a lockout survival guide to its membership of over 400. The survival guide informs players on how to save money and offers advice on refinancing mortgages and energy saving tips. As many as 80 percent of professional athletes have to address child support and alimony issues, one page in the survival guide is devoted to those issues.

Players' agents and their families are also influenced by the labor negotiations. Since contracts regarding the employment of players cannot be signed, agents are not able to collect commissions.

Of course, the mothers of many professional athletes' children depend upon child support and alimony. One such mother said the money she receives "is definitely important."

Source: San Francisco Chronicle, "NBA, NFL players' ex-wives likely to feel pinch," Scott Soshnick, 5/10/11

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