The Texas Department of State Health Services reports that every 10 minutes, a teenager in Texas gets pregnant. This leads to a Texas teen giving birth every 10 minutes and a Texas teenager getting an abortion every 48 minutes.
Numerous consequences are often associated with teen pregnancies, including teen moms becoming less likely to finish high school after having a child. Teenagers with children are also more likely to live in poverty and abuse alcohol or other drugs. This is perhaps one reason why the students at St. Edward's University recently called for the elimination of abstinence-only education in schools in an opinion piece. Instead, Hilltop Views encourages education to students that focuses on the dangers and consequences of unprotected sex, STDs and unplanned pregnancies.
It's also important to note that parents under the age of 18 are not usually exempt from the laws of the Texas Family Code. This means that a teen parent can contact a Houston family law attorney and go through legal procedures regarding paternity, child support, or child custody agreements.
Even if the non-custodial parent is a minor, he or she is still responsible for supporting the child and can still be required to pay child support through a court order. In cases like this, a Texas judge will look at a teenage parent's income while he or she is still in school and decide how much child support is to be paid based on that income. The case will be reviewed again by a judge once the teenage parent finishes school.
For more general information about parental rights and responsibilities, please visit our Related Resources links.
- Can a Teenage Parent Be Ordered to Pay Child Support? (FindLaw's Houston Family Law Blog)
- Look for a Houston Family Law Attorney (FindLaw)
- Responsibility of Grandparents When Teenagers Have Children (FindLaw's KnowledgeBase