Child support is an obligation that many parents in Texas and across the country face. While sometimes it can be difficult to deal with financially – and some may even feel it’s not fair – child support is ordered with the best interests of the children in mind. And while we often think of child support as stemming from divorce, it can come as a result of many different situations. One parent was ordered to make child support payments after an adoption went awry, leading to a host of family law problems for the woman.

The woman adopted a boy from Russia in 2010. She subsequently claimed he was emotionally damaged and accused the adoption agency of misleading her about his mental health. Her family also asserted the 7-year-old was violent and that they feared for their safety, allegations denied by the agency that arranged the adoption in the U.S. In a move that got the entire country talking, the woman sent the boy packing with only a note, putting him on an airplane to return to his native country.

The woman subsequently requested to have the adoption annulled in Russia, though it was not reported if she ever sought to have it annulled in the United States. The U.S. agency who arranged the adoption filed a lawsuit against her for breach of contract. It also requested child support on behalf of the boy, currently residing near Moscow in a group care facility. The adoption agency noted the boy remains a U.S. citizen and, under the laws of Tennessee, the legally adopted son of the woman. A court in that state recently affirmed its prior judgment that ordered the mother to pay $150,000 in child support.

Most Texas residents understand that an adoption creates a legal status of parent and child. And this dispute appears to underscore the point that parents are legally responsible for their minor children.

Source: CNN, “Woman who returned Russian boy must pay child support,” Martin Savidge, July 13, 2012