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Deion Sanders ordered to pay child support, but not alimony

A Texas judge has ruled on the divorce case of NFL star Deion Sanders and his wife Pilar, bringing some closure to yet another tumultuous celebrity breakup. The former Dallas Cowboy was ordered to pay $10,000 a month in child support, but will not have to pay alimony.

Saying she has no income and needs extra money from Deion, Pilar Sanders requested an annual sum of $288,000 in spousal support. The judge declined, but did order Deion to pay $3,500 a month for the house where Pilar lives and where their children will sometimes stay. He must also pay $275,000 to cover his wife's legal fees.

Deion has temporary custody of the couple's two sons and Pilar has temporary custody of their daughter. It's not clear when or if that will change. But now that most of the arrangements have been squared away, the rest of the case will go into arbitration, a private process that should put an end to this high-profile divorce.

Those who have been following the couple's divorce proceedings know that it's been a long, rocky road. Accusations of infidelity and bad parenting culminated in a physical fight at Deion's mansion, where both were staying but in separate living quarters. The altercation brought police to the home and led to domestic violence charges, which were dismissed. Both spouses also requested protective orders against each other, though a Collin County judge only granted one to Deion. The couple also fought over their possessions, some of which Deion accused Pilar of stealing.

While the couple's divorce may have been entertaining to sports fans and celebrity gawkers, it's important to remember that these are real people with problems that are very serious. In our last post we discussed the pros and cons of a "good divorce" versus a bad one and the effects that each can have on children. The Sanders children had little say in how their parents handled their split, yet they could suffer long-term emotional damage from the experience.

Even if you and your spouse aren't fighting over mansions and six-figure alimony payments, you may have some of the same problems that celebrity couples face as they divorce. Fortunately, you have the option of settling your child support, custody and alimony matters privately, with the help of qualified attorneys who want to help you make the best decisions for you and your children.

Source: KHOU.com, "Judge: Deion Sanders must pay child support, not spousal support," Rebecca Lopez, May 15, 2012

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