Texas television fans may have heard about the rather unique situation involving actress and past co-host of "The View" Sherri Shepherd and her former husband Lamar Sally. Shepherd wanted to void a contract making her the mother of a child created through surrogacy with Sally's sperm and a donor egg when their relationship ended. Shepherd lost her latest appeal on March 1 when the Pennsylvania Supreme Court refused to overturn a lower court's decision that she was the child's legal mother and that she must continue making child support payments.
Shepherd agreed to raising the child conceived through surrogacy as her own until she separated with Sally while the surrogate was still pregnant. After the boy was born, Shepherd did not want to be on the birth certificate or give any financial support because he was not her biological child. A trial court determined that Shepherd was the legal mother in April 2015, and she was ordered to pay child support until the boy is 13 years old.
Sally has possession of the child, and it is unknown if Shepherd will seek access. Shepherd was also involved in a dispute over her 9-year-old son in which his father alleged neglect on Shepherd's part, but she retained custody in 2014 when the complaints were determined to be unfounded.
This story highlights some of the options parents have when going through a divorce. A parent with possession can go to court to get a child support order, and this order can be enforced if the other parent does not make payments. A parent who is unable to pay the ordered amount due to an unforeseen financial downturn might want the help of an attorney in seeking a modification of that order.