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Help..fiance being denied paternity test!

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Okay, I am not sure if this thread belongs in Singel Parenting or this forum, so mods move it if you need too.

Here's the situation: My fiance had a child with his ex gf. She cheated on him repeatedly (which is part of the reason why he left her) and this baby may not be his, however, to make her happy, he signed the birth certificate when the child was born, and because he wanted so much for that baby to be his. Fast forward 3 years. My fiance and I have been together for over two years. His ex has refused to let him see the child, despite our attempts, and my fiance has finally given up, and just when he did, she sued him for child support. This is kind of an issue for us, because we live on my income, and he's in school, but if the child is his, we will of course work around that and help support his babe.

So, to protect ourselves, before he gets a job and starts paying support, he wants a paternity test, since there is a strong possibility that this child isn't is. Problem is, the prosecuting attorney is trying to say that he CAN"T have the paternity TEST!!!!! This is crazy...I don't know of any laws stating that he waived his rights to a paternity test...and I know you can't sign those rights away! He signed the birth certificate, but as far as I know, if you know there was infedility and if there was no marriage(there weren't married) then you get a paternity test! We are in Washington State. I know that they courts forced me to get a test with both my girls....but does anyone know anything about this??? It's really frustrating...we do have a lawyer btw.
post #2 of 24
Here in Oregon, I was forced to "prove" paternity for my oldest, but dad decided to not contest it. His dad and I were not married at the time of birth and he had not signed anything. Infact, my poor baby boy still has "unknown" as his father.

So no real help, just a good luck.
post #3 of 24
Maybe your fiance could pay for one himself?? Pricey, I'm sure - but if he's not that father it would pay off in the long run. Of course, with no access to the child that might be kind'a hard...but maybe in court he could offer to finance any testing?? Just some thoughts...
post #4 of 24
In most states if you sign the birth certificate or the child is born in a marriage and you don't contest the child at birth then the child is legally yours and even if it turns out to not be biologically yours you can't contest it. YOu have legally assumed responsibility for the child and that responsibilty can't be broken at any time for any reason.

You can give up your legal rights but you usually can't give up your responsibilty to pay cs UNLESS you can find someone else to adopt the child and assume your financial obligation.

I am sorry. This is an area of cs law that really sucks. But it is this way in order to protect children and provide them with financial security. Often it is a "nice guy" tax though isn't it?
post #5 of 24
I'd be inclined to find a different lawyer, in order to get this in front of a court.
1) Access. There's no good reason why your fiance can't have it.
2) Child support needs to be set at a level which won't force him to drop out of school, and doesn't take his income into account.
3) If he signed the birth certificate and so has parental responsibility, surely he is legally entitled to have a say in the child's medical care, including asking for a paternity test? I know the information won't change anything, but it would still be a help to KNOW.
Big hugs.
post #6 of 24
Actually, because of the time that has elapsed from the child's birth to now, this may be accurate. Sorry...
post #7 of 24
dp and i are not maried and when dd was born last year in washington state, dp had to sign not only the birth certificate but a separate 'i am the father' statement. did your fiance sign anything like that or just the birth certificate? if he did, it may be much more difficult for him to recant his responcibility. find out everything he signed and where copies might be.
post #8 of 24
My ex had to sign something like an affidavit (sp?) of parentage before he was allowed to sign the birth certificate. Once he signed that and got it notarized he voluntarily accepted paternity for our daughter, then his name was allowed to go on the BC and whatnot. Since we weren't married, they had to make sure he signed the acknowledgement of parentage first. Do you know if your fiance signed something like this? If he did, maybe call the courthouse and request a copy and see what it says about his rights to question paternity?

Hire another lawyer maybe or maybe go see someone with a consultation and see what they say to do? I'm sure if you talked to a lawyer or maybe the lawyer you already have they'd demand a paternity test because you're questioning paternity. It might be trickier if he signed the affidavit but i'm sure there are stipulations as to when paternity might be questioned. I just know that where i live, you can question paternity but if the father questions it and he's proven the father than he has to pay out of pocket. And if he's proven not to be the father, the mother has to then pay for the test.

Good Luck! I hope it works out!
post #9 of 24

I don't know washington laws

but my exdh was on the bc and he still got to request and get a paternity test
( what happened with it is another story altogether)
Is there a fathers rights org in that area you could contact? they may know the law a bit better and have some better advice...
post #10 of 24
nak
it is my understanding that if he signed the birth certificate, he is considered the baby's father, even if a paternity test proved otherwise. it doesnt make sense, imo, but thats the way ive heard it. i think hes stuck.
post #11 of 24
In the event he is the father only because he signed the paper and not biologically, couldn't he just relenquish his parental rights?
post #12 of 24
Relenquishing his rights doesn't stop his obligation to provide for the child financially.

In Washington State, you have to have a notarized paternity affidavit to be put on the birth certificate. It's possible that this was signed under false pretenses - ie, she lied to him, but if he knew she was cheating and signed anyway, that weakens his case.

In any case, he should not be getting his information from the procecuting attourney!! He needs is own source of legal advice.
post #13 of 24
odd, when my father voluntarilly terminated his parental rights to my brother he was no longer responsible for him in any way.

I found the page about parental rights/paternity law in WA state, hope it helps..
http://www.leg.wa.gov/RCW/index.cfm?...&chapter=26.26
post #14 of 24
Did someone else adopt your brother, Damiarayne?
post #15 of 24
If he is considered the father right now, how does he not have access to the child? What's up with your lawyer?
post #16 of 24
It can be done you need to talk to a lawyer. I know our ex-neighbors had issues because she got knocked up by her boy friend. Her husband had a vasectomy and was tested shooting blanks. They were still married at the time of the child's birth. The husband should have been on the birth certificate but he did a legal something or another that made sure he wasn't responsible for the affair child. (Ironically, come to find out the first of their children wasn’t biologically his either. This child refuses to live with mom because of all the lies. He would pay child support to mom if he didn’t have custody.)

If you read men’s groups/issues this paternity issue is one. Most of the time the guy is just stuck for paying a child that isn't his. Women always know the child is theirs, guys don’t they are left to trusting the woman she is telling the truth.

I would encourage you boyfriend to accept the child as his own, even if it isn't biologically. Fight for visitation/custody sometimes this alone can get the bio-mom to back off, especially if she is knowingly lying.
post #17 of 24
Have you man check out menweb, it is a Washington state thing and might have some good advice
post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marsupialmom
It can be done you need to talk to a lawyer. I know our ex-neighbors had issues because she got knocked up by her boy friend. Her husband had a vasectomy and was tested shooting blanks. They were still married at the time of the child's birth. The husband should have been on the birth certificate but he did a legal something or another that made sure he wasn't responsible for the affair child. (Ironically, come to find out the first of their children wasn’t biologically his either. This child refuses to live with mom because of all the lies. He would pay child support to mom if he didn’t have custody.)
Wow, what a sad story.
post #19 of 24
The prosecuting attorney is telling you the truth. If your fiance legally accepted responsibility for the child at its birth, it is not in the state's interest to provide a means for your fiance to no longer be responsible for the child - it is in the state's (and the child's) interest to have two people financially and socially responsible for a child. The phrase "terminating parental rights" drives me up the wall, because it's not something done lightly by the courts, and not something a parent can just decide to do. It's not just terminating the parent's "rights" to the child, it's also terminating the parent's responsibility to and for the child. Someone can choose to relinquish their "rights" to allow for adoption by another known party. Someone's "rights" can be terminated by the courts because they have been shown to be in no way a fit parent (for reasons of abuse, neglect, etc), to allow the state to act in loco parentis and/or allow the child to be adopted by another party. But, except in very few, very extraordinary circumstances, a legal parent can't just go into court and just decide that they no longer want to be responsible for their child and have that request granted out of hand.

In your fiance's situation, I'd retain an attorney and pursue custodial time with the child. Custody/visitation and child support are treated as separate issues in WA - failure to pay child support cannot be used as a reason to deny custodial time, and denial of custodial time cannot be used as a reason to withhold child support. However, if the mother is attempting to deny your fiance custodial time and claims that it's because your fiance isn't the child's father, she'll be put in a position to prove that (by showing who actually IS the biological father), and that evidence would then be available to fight the child support claim. (Note that this is not legal advice, please.)

I hope it can get sorted. I always feel sorry for the child caught in this situation - used as a means to make someone else's life difficult.

note: I *am* an attorney, but I am only offering cursory thoughts about the situation, not offering legal advice or counsel in any form. Please consult an attorney IRL if you require legal counsel.
post #20 of 24
I'm not a lawyer either - but I agree that you need one, and that your fiance needs to have custodial rights if he is going to pay child support. It always amazes me when women who are not fleeing abusers, etc. think they can get one without the other.

Even if the kid is not biologically his, what's to prevent him from being her father? If that's a relationship he wants (and it sounds like it is), then this action by the mom might be a positive thing in the end.

Anyhow, definitely, get a lawyer. If he is a student with no income and you are not married, I'm not sure what money mom is going after anyhow.
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