Re: Human faithfullness [was Re: Fwd: Lanier essay of 2001.12.04]

From: James Rogers (
Date: Sun Dec 09 2001 - 17:48:18 MST

On 12/9/01 5:16 AM, "Robert J. Bradbury" <> wrote:
> If it isn't my genetic child then
> I have no moral obligation to support it. (I'm unsure how the
> "legal" situation works -- I suspect at a minimum the genetic
> father would be required to pay child support.)

There have been court cases where the "father" was ordered to pay child
support despite DNA tests proving that he was not the father. The practical
effect of this recent direction is that there is a statute of limitations on
being a biological father as far as child support goes. If it takes you a
few years to figure out that your wife has been sleeping around and the kids
aren't yours, you can be held to be responsible for child support regardless
and the biological father takes no responsibility. This doesn't seem right,
but some courts have ruled this way.

If you want to establish paternity in such a way that your responsibility
can be based on DNA tests, it needs to be done shortly after the child is
born to still be in the clear legally. Otherwise, for the purposes of child
support payments, you may be considered the father simply because you
assumed you were.

-James Rogers

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