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Former prostitute regains child custody rights

When Texas parents are unable to reach an agreement on how to share parenting time and duties, the matter often goes before a court of law. That can lead to a scenario in which parents will make every effort to "win" a child custody case, even if that means launching personal attacks against each other. An example is found in the recent appellate win for a mother who once worked as a prostitute.

The mother lost custody of her two children after the father found out that she had been working part time as a prostitute. He was able to win custody of their two children based on the fact that the mother had chosen that line of work, even though she worked in an established brothel in a state where prostitution is legal. The children were never exposed to her line of work.

In the initial hearing, the mother stated that she had chosen to work as a prostitute for a short period of time in order to pay down more than $30,000 in medical debt, and to account for the nearly $10,000 in unpaid child support that the father had not provided. She went to school, earning her degree and becoming licensed as a social worker. In court, she provided evidence including her diplomas, provisional license and earnings statements. The court still gave custody to the father, calling the woman's credibility into question.

She appealed, and the appellate court ruled in her favor. The court wrote that the lower court appeared to have made the custody decision based primarily on the mother's decision to work in prostitution, not on the best interests of the children. She will now regain the right to raise her kids, although she could face additional custody challenges in the future if the father decides to pursue new litigation in the matter. The case serves as a warning to parents in Texas and elsewhere about the need to be prepared for any type of accusation that might be used in a child custody case.

Source: timesfreepress.com, "Tennessee court gives former prostitute primary custody of her children", Nov. 1, 2016

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