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Former NBA star must pay $500,000 in child support

Colorado basketball fans no doubt remember Dennis Rodman. The former NBA star of the 1980s and 1990s was as famous for his unconventional behavior as he was for his prowess on the court. Rodman returned to the public spotlight in December, as a court commissioner in an Orange County, California courtroom ordered him to pay half a million dollars in past due child support payments. The commissioner warned Rodman that if he failed to pay up, he could face jail time.

Rodman and his ex-wife have two children, a boy and a girl. Prior to the hearing in December his ex-wife had asked for $850,000, but the parties reached an out-of-court settlement for the $500,000 figure.

According to his attorney, Rodman was held in contempt of court for failing to pay enough child support. The attorney stated that Rodman did not appear at an earlier hearing at which additional child support was ordered, and claims the documents with the new payment amount were not served on him properly. As a result, Rodman's child support payments were short for several months. The attorney claims that once Rodman received the information about the new payments, he began to comply.

In Colorado, the amount of child support is determined by presumptive child support guidelines based on the parent's gross income, and which take into account the number of overnight stays the child has with each parent. The court also takes into account which parent is footing the bill for day care, health insurance and other expenses.

Failure to pay child support can result in serious penalties in Colorado. If child support obligations become overwhelming due to job loss or a change in circumstances, a parent can request the court for a modification, but it is best to do this before the payments become delinquent.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Dennis Rodman ordered to pay $500,000 in back child support," Houston Mitchell, Dec. 7, 2012

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