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Texas banker's battle over child support, custody gets ugly

In many cases, a divorce does not mark the end of legal disputes between couples. That is especially true when there are child support and custody issues. Now the founder of Texas's Green Bank and his ex-wife are involved in a particularly nasty and public battle over child custody and support. The banker is bringing up issues that his ex-wife says have no place in the dispute.

In the child support battle, the 59-year-old is arguing that he should no longer have to make his child support payments of $5,000 a month and that his ex-wife should repay the amount she has received since April 2013. That's when her ex-husband was granted temporary custody. The ex-spouses both live in New York City, although the banker also owns homes in Houston and Mexico.

The woman's attorney argues that if her ex-husband is able to recoup the money, she will be unable to maintain her Manhattan apartment where the children will live if they are returned to her. The 38-year-old woman reportedly left her job as a human resources executive when she got married in 2006.

The banker has accused his wife of being a hypocrite and a liar. He and his attorney were able to introduce evidence that she had an abortion in 2012, not long after the couple's divorce. The evidence was allowed on the grounds that it reportedly showed the woman's lack of credibility. She had asserted that she had not allowed any men in her apartment. The banker's attorney is no stranger to warring couples. She also represented Mia Farrow in her battle with Woody Allen for custody of their children.

The woman called her husband's attempts to get his money back "cruel and vindictive," but not as "devastating and heartbreaking" as losing custody of their children, who are five and three years old. A ruling has not yet been made on her bid to regain custody.

Legal battles between ex-spouses can indeed get ugly. Experienced divorce attorneys are expected to do whatever they can within the law to fight for their clients. Sometimes that involves introducing evidence that may be painful or embarrassing to the other spouse. Judges are there to determine what is and is not relevant to the case. As in most custody and support battles, it can only be hoped that the final decision is in the best interest of the children.

Source: New York Daily News, "Man who used ex-wife's abortion as evidence in custody battle wants child support repaid" Dareh Gregorian, Mar. 04, 2014

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