Taylor v. Speck, 308 S.W.3d 81 (Tex. App. – San Antonio 2010, no pet.)

In this child support enforcement case, the noncustodial parent argued on appeal that the custodial parent waited too long to bring her child support collection case and that the unpaid child support was barred by dormancy.

The San Antonio Court of Appeals held that the recent amendment to the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies specifically removed unpaid child support from the judgments that are subject to dormancy. The Court upheld the trial court’s judgment of $237,248.96 in back child support and interest. The Court also ruled that provisional attorney’s fees may be awarded in the event the noncustodial parent files for bankruptcy.

This case is the first case awarding a child support obligee provisional attorney’s fees in the event the noncustodial parent files bankruptcy and the custodial parent must pursue the child support in the bankruptcy court. Note these attorney’s fees are not owed by the obligor unless the obligor files bankruptcy and the obligee has to go to bankruptcy court to protect the child support.