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In re M.A.B.

Court of Appeals of Texas, Fourth District, San Antonio

April 26, 2017

In the Interest of M.A.B., a Child

         From the 150th Judicial District Court, Bexar County, Texas Trial Court No. 2015EM504304 Honorable Nick Catoe Jr., Judge Presiding

          Sitting: Karen Angelini, Justice Luz Elena D. Chapa, Justice Irene Rios, Justice

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          Karen Angelini, Justice

         Justin Russell Adcock appeals from a judgment establishing the parent-child relationship. In two issues, Adcock argues the trial court erred by not allowing him an opportunity to present his side of the case and by setting child support in excess of the amount allowed by the Texas Family Code. We affirm.

         Background

         On July 6, 2015, the Texas Office of the Attorney General filed a petition to establish the parent-child relationship between Adcock and M.A.B. Adcock was served with the petition and participated in court-ordered DNA testing, which showed that he was M.A.B.'s biological father.

         The case was set for trial on the merits on June 1, 2016. On June 1, 2016, Adcock filed a document stating that he was no longer a Texas resident, was residing in Ohio, and would be unable to appear for trial. Adcock also requested that the court "not order my physical appearance for any matters involving this case" and stated that "[i]f the court[] could please honor this [and] cease to continue with such orders" then he "would be more than happy to cooperate by any means which are available to me."

         On June 1, 2016, the trial court called the case for trial. Adcock failed to appear. The Attorney General presented evidence, consisting of the testimony of the child's mother and the DNA testing results. The trial court rendered judgment establishing the parent-child relationship between Adcock and M.A.B., and ordering conservatorship, visitation, and retroactive, medical, and child support for M.A.B. Adcock appealed.

         Proceeding to Trial

         In his first issue, Adcock argues that the trial court "move[d] forward with a trial and subsequent judgment" without allowing him "any opportunity to present his side of the case or documents necessary to move forward with a fair and just ruling." Adcock cites no cases or other authority to support his argument.

         "The Texas Rules of Appellate Procedure require adequate briefing." ERI Consulting Eng'rs, Inc. v. Swinnea, 318 S.W.3d 867, 880 (Tex. 2010); In re Estate of Valdez, 406 S.W.3d 228, 235 (Tex. App.-San Antonio 2013, pet. denied). In particular, Rule 38.1(i) requires that an appellant's brief contain clear and concise arguments with "appropriate citations to authorities and to the record." Tex.R.App.P. 38.1(i). An appellant who fails to satisfy these requirements waives the issue on appeal. Valdez, 406 S.W.3d at 235.

         Because Adcock cites no cases or other authority to support his argument, his first issue is waived for inadequate briefing. See id. (concluding issue was waived when the appellant's brief failed to contain clear and concise argument with appropriate citation to authorities and to the record).

         Child Support Amount

         In his second issue, Adcock argues the trial court violated chapter 154 of the Texas Family Code by setting the amount of child support in excess of the amount allowed by statute. In its judgment, the trial court ordered Adcock to pay ...


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