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NPO publishes blog articles to inform and to stimulate conversation about issues of importance to NPO's mission.  All blog articles express the opinions of the authors as individuals and do not necessarily reflect the views of National Parents Organization, its Board of Directors, or its executives.  

Bedard is already paying nearly $80,000 a year for his daughter, as well as another $80,000 for his daughter’s education. Most of this money is tax-free to Roberts--a very large sum for one child, particularly in Kentucky. [caption id="" align="alignright" width="250" caption="Boston Red Sox pitcher Erik Bedard."][/caption] In a story featured in over 1,000 media outlets, Red Sox pitcher Erik Bedard was served child support papers shortly before his start against the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday. Courtney Roberts, 38, of Lexington, Ky., the mother of Bedard"s daughter Julie, is seeking to tear up their previous agreement on child support and get a higher amount based on Bedard"s increased earnings. Ned Holstein, MD, MS, Board Chairman of the Boston-based national family court reform organization Fathers and Families, explains:

"Bedard is already paying nearly $80,000 a year for his daughter, as well as another $80,000 for his daughter"s education. Most of this money is tax-free to Roberts--a very large sum for one child, particularly in Kentucky.

"The Kentucky Court of Appeals has already ruled against Roberts twice--she"s simply forum shopping. Having lost there, she"s trying to hit the jackpot here in Massachusetts. Clearly, she wants a windfall for her own use, not the child"s.

"Julie"s needs are very generously funded. No one could possibly argue that she needs more money. Whatever else Erik might choose to buy for his daughter should be up to his heart, not up to the government.  If a wealthy married couple chose to spend ‘only" $80,000 per year on their child, no one would think twice about it. Why should parental separation change that?'

Holstein, who served on the Commonwealth"s Task Force on the Child Support Guidelines, cites a study conducted by Arizona State University researchers published in Family Court Review which found that, adjusting for income, fathers with joint custody voluntarily contribute even more to their children's college education than the children's mothers do. He adds:

"Research very clearly shows that when divorced or separated fathers are permitted to be a meaningful part of their children"s lives, they are very generous with their kids. If Courtney Roberts wants Erik to spend more money on their child, she should do everything possible to foster shared parenting during the baseball off-season.'

Fathers and Families improves the lives of children and strengthens society by protecting the child"s right to the love and care of both parents after separation or divorce. www.FathersandFamilies.org. Dr. Holstein served on the Commonwealth"s Task Force on the Child Support Guidelines.

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