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Robert Meachem jailed for failing to pay alimony, child support

Tennessee Titans fans may be shocked to learn that former wide receiver Robert Meachem is serving a jail sentence for failing to pay almost $400,000 in child support and alimony to his ex-wife. A former New Orleans Saint, Meachem began serving his 30-day jail sentence on Feb. 13 in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana.

Meachem and his wife reportedly divorced in 2015 and agreed to share custody of their children. The New Orleans Advocate reported that a judge ruled that Meachem had only paid $200,000 out of $588,000 that he owed. Over his career, Meachem reportedly made around $20 million.

Meachem will be released from jail if he pays his ex-wife $100,000. He also reportedly testified that much of his money had been stolen from him by a former assistant and a former officer of a charitable organization that Meachem founded. He testified that in order to survive, he had been forced to ask other NFL players for financial assistance. In a previous hearing, his ex-wife's attorney stated that Meachem had taken millions out of joint accounts he owned with her.

People who are ordered to pay alimony and child support should be aware that the amounts do not simply go away. People who fail to pay the court-ordered support amounts may face substantial penalties, including jail time. If people's financial circumstances have changed substantially since the orders were issued, they may file motions for modifications. They must continue paying the amounts that have been ordered until the judges issue new orders for the modified amounts. Family law attorneys may help their clients with gathering documents demonstrating the change in their financial circumstances that warrant lowered amounts.

Source: ESPN, "Robert Meachem jailed for owing $400K in alimony, child support," Mike Triplett, Feb. 15, 2017.

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