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Old 02-12-2010, 11:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hoping for some good advice to help my friend.

He just got served child support notice yesterday for a child he has never even met, who is about a year and a half old now.

Basically, his ex was cheating on him and threatened him that she'd come after him for all kinds of support when she got pregnant. He didn't even know if the child was his or not.

She packed up and moved several states away while she was pregnant.

He had not heard from her since. He had heard through an old mutual friend that she had the baby somewhere around last November (2008).

He was never served a request for a paternity test so he figured she knew he wasn't the father and maybe sent something to the guy she was cheating with.

Now last night he was served papers for paternity to enstate child support, as well as retroactive child support.

It has been 15 months!!! Since this child was born! It just infuriates me that she has waited all this time to say/do anything! He has never even seen so much as a picture of this kid and still doesn't know for sure if it's his or not.

He is getting a lawyer and the paternity test... but this whole thing is just nauseating to me. It sickens me that men can get hit with thousands of dollars of retroactive support for a child they knew nothing about!!!

Anyway... does anyone know of any resources that may help my friend?

As it is this woman still lives states away. He still has never even seen a picture of this baby. It's not right to be made to pay for a child that you have been denied any relationship with.


EDIT: He is being told he needs to make the first payment during some conference meeting he has in March. But this is taking place before paternity testing... the woman is residing in I beleive, Michigan. I'm pretty sure the law states that paternity has to be established prior to any support being forced?! They were not married.

I'm thinking he should not pay anything until paternity has been proven... correct?

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Old 02-12-2010, 01:35 PM
 
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He needs to get a lawyer versed in interstate custody and child support; he will need Michigan counsel if he wants representation in court there, but a local attorney can get him off on the right foot.

(Standard "this isn't legal advice" disclaimer applies.)

He's probably being asked to make the payments starting in March because if he just admits paternity, he can do so and avoid much or all of the court involvement. Generally speaking, no, he's not required to pay just because someone identified him as a possible father. (Check the papers--there's probably something advising him that if he does nothing, the support order will kick in, but if he wishes to contest or appeal, he needs to do X. Obviously, he should do X.)

I wonder if the mother has applied for some public benefit and the state is insisting she establish paternity and get child support. (That's what happened with my husband's ex--no, she didn't need to establish paternity but she applied for a child care subsidy and the state came in and insisited they set up child support, even though they were still legally married and he was taking care of a lot of expenses directly rather than through a child support order. Anyhow.)

Michigan has some good self-help stuff to get him started:
http://courts.michigan.gov/scao/self.../paternity.htm
http://courts.michigan.gov/scao/self...ly/support.htm

Most other states have some sort of FAQ online, if this is not a Michigan case.

In most states (not sure about Michigan specifically), if they were married, the child is presumed his until tests prove otherwise (and even then, some judges won't terminate the parental rights if the biological father isn't around to step up, or, more commonly, if the husband has been raising the child as his own the whole time) and then the court could order child support without "proof" of paternity; since they were not married, there is no presumption.

If the child turns out to be his, the judge *can* award retroactive CS but (again, speaking generally) doesn't have to. They can work out a payment plan so it's not like a $15,000 hit all at once. (I've also seen judges yell at women who have kept their kids from their fathers like that, if they don't have restraining-order-type reasons, rather than award retroactive CS.) Support going forward will almost certainly be addressed.

Keep in mind that once paternity is established, your friend does have the right to begin to develop a relationship with his daughter, establish visitation, etc. He could even petition for custody (but is unlikely to get it unless the Mom's downright dangerous).

Best of luck to him!

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Old 02-12-2010, 01:38 PM
 
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I am sorry for your friend, and no I would not pay any support until paternity is determined.

I've had this happen to several friends, and I've told them the same thing - if the paternity test comes out to be positive, it's their responsibility to pursue visitation, joint custody whatever - even if that includes support.

Men that don't want to have children, should be more careful. Do I think it's necessarily fair? No. But it's life, and life is never fair either.

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Old 02-12-2010, 01:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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He does want children... and will be stepping up to take responsibility if it turns out that the child is his.

But right now he is very hurt and angry that she has waited 15 months to do anything. He has been robbed of the entire first year + of his "could-be-daughter's" life. And we have only just now seen a picture and know for sure that it is a she because we found the Mom on facebook.

He also has a facebook account, so it's not like it would have been hard to find him if she cared at all about having him in their life. *sighs*

It is so cruel for someone to do this not only to the Father, but to their baby!!

Apparently she hooked up with someone as soon as she moved back to Michigan... and his profile pic on facebook is of the three of them... so my friend is reeling a bit from that too that basically this child has been raised to beleive that this guy is her Dad, as he has been in pics since day one.

So why would Mom even disrupt everyone's life right now?! I am so angry for my friend.

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Old 02-12-2010, 01:59 PM
 
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And i bet if the baby is his and he gets visitation the mother will throw a fit about it and try to use that he hasnt been in her life to keep him from seeing her. I hate when parents use their children like that.

No advice, i just wanted to vent a little

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Old 02-12-2010, 02:27 PM
 
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Let me see:
* he knew he was having sex with her and, presumably, whether or not HE wore condoms
* he knew she was pregnant
* he knew she "threatened" to go after him for child support (so she must have known that there was a chance he was the father)
* he knew she moved away and didn't go after him right away for child support
* he even heard that she gave birth to a child

YET despite all that, he was happy enough to let it go, probably relieved--if only subconsciously, and whether or not he'll admit to it today--to have dodged a bullet with her, happy enough to not pursue finding out whether or not it was his child and his rights as a father (if it was his child) for 1.5 years.

And only NOW that he's been served for child support, he's all indignant that she kept the child from him and he missed out on "his-maybe-child's first year and a half"...

Um, sorry, I think I'll reserve my indignation for BOTH of them equally in this case.
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Old 02-12-2010, 03:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes... I suppose he could have tried to fight her back when she was still pregnant... But you need money to start fighting things in court... lots of money for interstate when he is likely now going to have to travel to get to her state for court things.

He has no money. He was laid off around the time she was pregnant and had a really hard time getting another job. Even the job he has now, he isn't making much above minimum wage...

I love how everything always comes down to... "well the Father should fight for his rights..." Except not every Father has thousands of dollars lying around to fight for rights that are just given to the Mother naturally.


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Old 02-12-2010, 03:11 PM
 
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The only reason I can think of why a man wouldn't have gotten a paternity test right away is if he wasn't interested in being a father. If he was interested, he would have gotten a paternity test. I feel for him that his wife was cheating on him - there's just no excuse for that. But it's not a punishment to take a paternity test, you do it because you want to know.

I know it's biologically impossible for us women, but can you imagine your husband having a kid and maybe it's yours? And can you imagine just saying "oh well, he moved away" or whatever?

The excuse that he doesn't have a relationship with the kid just doesn't fly for me. That was his choice.

I can't IMAGINE not settling that question right from the get-go.

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Old 02-12-2010, 03:12 PM
 
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JSMa - I'm going to respectfully agree with Ione. It is up to BOTH parents to fight for their children. One parent doesn't get off scott free just b/c the other moved away. She threatened child support actions, he should have beat her to the punch and petitioned for visitation (you say he wants children after all).

And its all fine and good that he will accept responsibility for the little girl if he's the father, and he's on FB so easy to find. SHE is also on facebook, and easy to find. His excuses only go so far.

Now, that being said, if he wants visitation he should ask for it. If he's the father, he'll get it (so long as there's no reason for him not to).
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Old 02-12-2010, 03:22 PM
 
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So, it was OK for him to miss that time because he was waiting to have $$, but now that someone wants $$ from him, he's indignant that he missed it?

Um, nope, doesn't sound any better to me...

How about putting it another way: He was really just waiting to find a well-paying job to follow up on his potential fatherhood but going to follow up as soon as he was earning X amount?

Um, nope, doesn't really sound any better to me put that way either...

They both deserve equal indignation still in my book.

Edited to add: Especially since he was perfectly OK with letting the mother shoulder the entire financial and emotional burden of raising their (maybe) child on her own? And now that he might be asked to shoulder a share of that financial burden if the child is his, he's horribly upset that he missed a year and a half (by his own doing equally--she didn't lie to him and say she wasn't pregnant, and I'm assuming this wasn't a case of deliberate-on-her-part "oops-BC-failed", or he'd be indignant about that too)?
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Old 02-12-2010, 03:53 PM
 
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My story sounds like this kind of only I'm the woman and it took me over a year to get into court. You can't just go to court and say hey I want to file support and that's it next day the person gets served, it takes time to do that, I tried to file twice before I actually got it into court in the last 15.5 months and both times I got rejected due to lack of information or he "joined" the army and I had to wait for him to be done basic He ended up with a dishonorable discharge. And since September its been set back 3 times for him being unco-operative, he requested paternity I paid for my half, set the appointment and went and did it. He was required to do it by the 12th of January, he didn't, they set it over to the 9th of this month, he made such a fuss and was SOOOO difficult they let him make the appointment without paying and now he still hasn't paid and its been put over till the 2nd of next month. This guy has never met my son, never seen more then one pic of him. And when I called to tell him his son had been born he pretended to be someone else. That all being said, you don't know if this woman had tried to contact him and he just didn't say anything until he was served with papers. Men make us out to be the bad ones when they don't want to take responsibility for things. If this child is his regardless of if he gets visitation or sees this baby he is still responsible to this child financially. Just my .02.

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Old 02-12-2010, 04:06 PM
 
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Let me see:
* he knew he was having sex with her and, presumably, whether or not HE wore condoms
* he knew she was pregnant
* he knew she "threatened" to go after him for child support (so she must have known that there was a chance he was the father)
* he knew she moved away and didn't go after him right away for child support
* he even heard that she gave birth to a child

YET despite all that, he was happy enough to let it go, probably relieved--if only subconsciously, and whether or not he'll admit to it today--to have dodged a bullet with her, happy enough to not pursue finding out whether or not it was his child and his rights as a father (if it was his child) for 1.5 years.

And only NOW that he's been served for child support, he's all indignant that she kept the child from him and he missed out on "his-maybe-child's first year and a half"...

Um, sorry, I think I'll reserve my indignation for BOTH of them equally in this case.
^^Yep.

I totally respect that he wants to be in the child's life if the child is his. He can make that happen, and could have before.

However, it doesn't matter that he has not met the child. If the child is his he owes child support. Child support and visitation are a separate issue.

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Old 02-12-2010, 08:24 PM
 
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Sorry, but I agree. Yo have sex with someone who then turns up pregnant, and teh dates *might* match, you pursue it. I'm not sure about Michigan, but here, a father can sign up with the state to say that he believes he is/mnight be the father of a child, and when the child is born, they will do paternity/support/custody. He could have done that. He could have contacted her around teh time of teh birth, or at any point in those 15 months to get a pat. test ordered. It doesn't take thousands of dollars. A few hundred, maybe, and some effort.
He shoudl just be honest. Say he might be the father, but he doesn't know, and wants the pat test. Here in my state, if her turns out to be the father, he has to pay for teh test, but if not, the mom has to pay for it. Could be different there. If he is the father, he'll get support ordered....as to back support, he may or may not, if he does, it'll be paid usually in teh form of a small payment each month until it's gone. He can also ask for visitation, but being in dif states will amke that difficult, especially sicne he's had no prior contact. He'll need to be prepared to maek a lot of trips, probably, untilthe child gets used to him, and by age 2 or so, he can probably get visits in his own town.

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Old 02-13-2010, 12:18 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Actually him and her were living in Rhode Island when they were together (never married). She was supposedly on the pill... then when she became pregnant she told him that she actually wasn't on the pill.

The dates he was told that she conceived they were seperated and he is pretty sure he was actually in PA at the time visiting family. That in part is why he never pursued paternity earlier too... he was already about 90% sure he wasn't the Father given when she likely conceived.

It turns out he did try to contact her a few times to get updates on what was going on, because she was telling him he'd receive something about paternity after the baby was born. He has the last correspondence from her at the begining of Nov. 2008, a few weeks before the baby was born.

He tried contacting her several times after that but she never responded. He heard through the grapevine of mutual friends that she was definitely cheating on him, and in his mind since he was already 90% certain that they were seperated at the time she got pregnant... he honestly thought there was no way he was the Father, and since she dropped all communication with thim, and stopped answering his emails, he figured she had the baby and saw that the baby looked nothing like him and realized it was likely the baby of whoever she was cheating with.

I'm not saying he is right for not pursuing paternity on his own sooner... but given all the circumstances involved... I don't blame him for his line of logic to not do it either.

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Old 02-13-2010, 12:29 AM
 
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That's all well and good, JSMa. And I don't really blame him all that much either.

BUT in that case, there is no reason for him to be indignant about having missed out on 1.5 years that he did not want to be involved in. If he had really wanted to be involved from the start, he could have easily and inexpensively enough. He didn't. Which means that I personally don't have much patience for the "robbed me of my child's first 1.5 years" sob story part of it all.

That said, all of those reasons for not pursuing it sooner are, however, very good reasons to request a DNA test and not get emotionally involved until the results come back.

Lying about BC: totally unacceptable and worthy of more indignation than I can summon tonight. Way more.
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Old 02-13-2010, 10:20 AM - Thread Starter
 
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*nods*

His emotions are pretty much all over the place right now because he is sort of re-living the end of his relationship with this woman too. She was not very nice to him, in fact I'd go as far to say she was very emotionally and verbally abusive.

When he was told by her that she had actually stopped taking her BC, he was pretty angry because she manipulated/controlled him with other things, and that was why they were seperated to begin with.

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Old 02-13-2010, 12:10 PM
 
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I agree with ProtoL that it may have started because she applied for state benefits of some kind. The same thing was set to happen to my husband (who was paying child support directly to mom, not through the state, which is how they both wanted it). We paid for private insurance instead because the state would pursue child support if they were paying for the child's medical insurance, and neither parent wanted to go that route.

Also, he may not have been the only person served with paternity and support papers, or he might be the first on the list, or he might be the next one on the list after eliminating other people, or he might be the easiest to find...

I certainly wouldn't pay anything until the court ordered me to do so because once you pay it, you will never ever get it back, even if it shouldn't have been paid in the first place-- my husband paid for half of some childcare mom claimed she was using, which he knew wasn't true. Mom had no proof of it (because it didn't exist) and finally admitted that she wasn't using childcare and that she didn't have any of the required proof of payment. My husband paid for 5 months of childcare that everyone knows didn't exist, but the child support office never ordered it repaid to him. In fact, my husband had to pay an extra month while the change was being processed in the computer system. I can certainly imagine the same thing happening while waiting for a paternity test to be done and processed...

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Old 02-13-2010, 12:39 PM
 
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"The only reason I can think of why a man wouldn't have gotten a paternity test right away is if he wasn't interested in being a father."

... and IMO, that's OK. It's all right to not want to be a father. It's even all right to trust your live-in gf to be taking the pills she says she's taking, to be infuriated when she admits to lying about using bc, and to want nothing to do with her, or her child, ever again. That's a legitimate way to feel.

Our contemporary cultural practice of automatically assigning paternity rights outside of marriage makes me INSANE. Why on Earth would I guy I had sex with once have a 50% claim to a baby I had nine months later? If men want to be fathers, they can darn well sign up for it (through marriage, through another kind of legal contract, whatever). Fatherhood is a privilege, not some odious burden. I wish our legal system treated it that way.

That said, under our current system, your friend is going to be on the hook for support if his sperm is the sperm that made the baby, so there's no point railing against it. He need a lawyer to guide him through the process. If you want to help him, JsMa, you'd better start praying that the kid isn't his. If the kid IS his, then he'll need a lot of help working through his feelings and deciding when/how/whether to pursue a role in his daughter's life.

I think it's very, very likely that this is coming up after 15 months because the mom applied for some kind of government aid. It's too bad she did that, and too bad that she didn't offer up "some guy at a bar, I think I was drugged" instead of letting the state chase down an ex that she CLEARLY not does want involved in her child's life. If it makes your friend feel better, JsMa, his ex may well be COMPLETELY APPALLED that he might be showing up asking for visitation, as she has clearly chosen to raise this child with another man. So he shouldn't assume that she's cackling in glee at the prospect of getting $$ from him. She may not have even fully realized that whatever action she took was going to bring him to her doorstep.

A terrible situation all around.
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Old 02-15-2010, 08:51 PM
 
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Our contemporary cultural practice of automatically assigning paternity rights outside of marriage makes me INSANE. Why on Earth would I guy I had sex with once have a 50% claim to a baby I had nine months later? If men want to be fathers, they can darn well sign up for it (through marriage, through another kind of legal contract, whatever). Fatherhood is a privilege, not some odious burden. I wish our legal system treated it that way.
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Old 02-16-2010, 04:37 AM
 
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And i bet if the baby is his and he gets visitation the mother will throw a fit about it and try to use that he hasnt been in her life to keep him from seeing her. I hate when parents use their children like that.

No advice, i just wanted to vent a little
I agree with that. That is what my boyfriend is going through.
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Old 02-16-2010, 12:52 PM
 
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Except not every Father has thousands of dollars lying around to fight for rights that are just given to the Mother naturally.

Well, here's the thing... There is usually at least one person (if not more) who actually see the child exit the woman's body - it is obvious who the mother is. Very rarely is there anyone except the woman and the man present when the child is conceived. So the father could be any man the woman had sex with during a certain period of time. So it isn't really that odd or unfair that the father needs to go an extra mile or so to prove that he is the father - especially if they are unmarried.

At the end of the day, there's enough blame to go around as to who should have done what and when. None of that helps the child, who has the right to know both of her parents. Now that it's out there, he should leave the blame beside the door, find out if he's Dad and go from there.
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Old 02-16-2010, 02:25 PM
 
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I'm always a little disturbed by the attitude that, even though a man was sleeping with a woman when she became pregnant, and therefore could have gotten her pregnant, the baby has nothing to do with him unless it can be proven that his is the sperm that fathered the child. I mean, if you're sleeping with her, close enough, right? I don't know- I guess that's how I would feel. It's a kid, not a car accident. The child needs all the support it can get. This is out there, but I think that if we really cared about kids, then everyone who was sleeping with mom at the time of conception would help with the child.

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Old 02-16-2010, 03:29 PM
 
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"This is out there, but I think that if we really cared about kids, then everyone who was sleeping with mom at the time of conception would help with the child."

And I guess I'm "out there" in the other direction, because I think a woman who is interested in having a coparent should have to take a specific action - marriage or other formal legal agreement - in order to establish legally binding paternal right/responsibilities.

Women are the ones who have babies. In our society, they can even decide NOT to have a baby after becoming accidentally pregnant. I'm all for fathers - I have one, my kids have one - but I don't think chasing down some guy a woman used to sleep creates a father figure. I think it often creates a nightmare. If the state has to chase him, the child is better off without him.
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Old 02-16-2010, 03:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Women are the ones who have babies. In our society, they can even decide NOT to have a baby after becoming accidentally pregnant. I'm all for fathers - I have one, my kids have one - but I don't think chasing down some guy a woman used to sleep creates a father figure. I think it often creates a nightmare. If the state has to chase him, the child is better off without him.
To your bolded statment... what about in cases where the Father never even knew the possibility that he was a Father? That isn't the exact case in this particular situation...

But my BIL and his ex split up. There was no mention from his ex before the break up of even the possibility of her being pregnant.

He ran into her three years later with a young toddler in a stroller that looked a lot like him and he started questioning her. She still denied that she had ever been pregnant from him, and that the child was her current BF's.

Well, a year later her and that current BF were no longer together and she decided to go to domestics and get child support. She then gave my BIL's name as a possible Father.

So the state had to track him down and he took the paternity test... and lo and behold he is indeed the Father. He got handed an order for retro-active support for the past three+ years as well as continuing... he fought for vistation rights and now has a relationship with his son that the Mother kept from him for three + years.

So I don't think it's as black and white as "if the state has to chase him down the child is better off" I can gaurantee that this little boy is happy and glad that he finally knows who his real Dad is and the Dad is happy to finally know the truth too.

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Old 02-16-2010, 03:59 PM
 
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nightmare. If the state has to chase him, the child is better off without him.
Except for little details like money, this might be true. Personally, I don't think guys should be let off the hook as easily as all that.

Given that we have the biology we have, there is no way to be absolutely, perfectly fair to everyone in any custody dispute. We just have to stumble along, trying to suss out the best interests of the child. I truly do not think those interests are served by just saying that if a guy can skip town or be hard to reach for a bit, there's no point using the legal system to get him to give his children anything.
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Old 02-16-2010, 11:32 PM
 
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Our contemporary cultural practice of automatically assigning paternity rights outside of marriage makes me INSANE. Why on Earth would I guy I had sex with once have a 50% claim to a baby I had nine months later?
Pretty much for the same reason you have a 50% claim on HIS baby... You didn't create it all by yourself... if you want to have a baby and never run the risk of ever having to share it with anyone else, you probably shouldn't get pregnant by having sex. Both people who made the baby should at least be given the option of participation in the child's life, unless they've specifically said they are donating their half of the necessary ingredients with no interest in being any part of the possibly resulting child, and the person using the sperm/egg is agreeing to let that person opt out of parenting forever (as would be the case with sperm or egg donation).

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Old 02-17-2010, 10:22 AM
 
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Pretty much for the same reason you have a 50% claim on HIS baby... You didn't create it all by yourself... if you want to have a baby and never run the risk of ever having to share it with anyone else, you probably shouldn't get pregnant by having sex. Both people who made the baby should at least be given the option of participation in the child's life, unless they've specifically said they are donating their half of the necessary ingredients with no interest in being any part of the possibly resulting child, and the person using the sperm/egg is agreeing to let that person opt out of parenting forever (as would be the case with sperm or egg donation).
Yes. This.

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Old 02-17-2010, 04:58 PM
 
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Big difference being, in this society HE can't make a baby with me without without my full, wholehearted, ongoing consent. (There are certainly other countries where my husband could rape me and then force me to carry his baby and then divorce me and get full custody, but we are taling about American policy here, so I'm using American laws/customs.)

Whereas, as JsMa points out, there are situations in which a woman who is willing to tell one whopper of a lie can have a baby without the knowledge of the guy who was her HUSBAND at the time the bay was conceived. And in that case, yes, it may well be that the child is better served by the state tracking down the biological father.


But that's an edge case, and social policy, which can never be perfectly just in every single case, needs to be geared toward the majority case which is "this guy is ducking his paternal responsibilities" or "this woman knows right from the get-go that she does not want this man in her child's life." I really do believe that kids with deadbeat fathers would be better off with NO father, and that woman who want to continue an unplanned pregnancy and raise their baby alone should have that right. I'd rather contribute to the support support of fatherless (or motherless, it goes both ways) kids with my tax dollars then track down mom's former sex partners and subpoena their DNA.

It just. doesn't. matter. to me who sired the child of a single woman. I do not think that that biological tie is a morally sound basis for assigning legal rights and responsibilities. If a single woman wants to keep her baby, I support her. If she needs financial assistance as a single parent, I support her. If the guy she had sex with wants to be a father, then he can marry her OR make an agreement with her to provide formal support and be given parental rights OR he can go out looking for a woman who would like to marry or otherwise contract with him to co-parent their future children.

I wish nobody ever had sex without both parties being fully in agreement on would happen if a baby resulted, but since I can't make that happen I'll settle for social policy that recognizes the vast difference between a sexual relationship and a marital relationship. The latter is (among other things) an enforceable commitment by a man to provide for the needs of the children he has with his wife. The former is should not be, IMO. For better or worse, both men and women have sex with people that they'd NEVER choose to parent with, and I fail to see the benefit in pushing either party into a coparenting relationship.
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Old 02-17-2010, 05:27 PM
 
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He just got served child support notice yesterday for a child he has never even met, who is about a year and a half old now.
... It's not right to be made to pay for a child that you have been denied any relationship with.
It looks like you've already gotten some sound legal advice here. (I'm not sure what a "proto" lawyer is, but she generally knows what's going on!)

Morally, I agree the situation is infuriating: if the Mom considers your friend enough of a father that he should pay child support, why did she think she had no responsibility to let him develop a relationship with the child, until she needed money? It's despicable.

I also feel frustrated with mothers who are ready to take their ex to court and push for him to be thrown in jail over any hint of deviation from the child support orders, but who do not comply with their ex's visitation rights. But the same moral principal that applies in that case applies to your friend: child support is about the child's needs, plain and simple. If, indeed, your friend had relations with his wife which produced a child, then that child has needs which require money. It is not the child's fault that one or both of his parents were foolish. If - rightly or wrongly - the child's mother paid for everything for the first 18 months, but now she's destitute, it may be in the child's best interest to have Dad not only start paying support, but start making up some of the support he - by rights - should have paid the first 18 months. That Mom is a jerk and created her current financial mess, by trying to keep Dad from knowing the kid until now is a separate issue.

The fact that Mom probably won't be penalized in any way for her prior secrecy, yet Dad will be regarded as a "deadbeat" by anyone who knows he has an order for back child support... is also a separate issue. A very, very regrettable and unfair separate issue!

Under the circumstances, I say he should definitely find out if the kid is his before he invests himself emotionally or financially. (Unless he's one of those saints who's willing to be a father to this kid even if it's not his, just because the kid has no other Dad in the picture. In that case, kiss him for me!)

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Old 02-17-2010, 06:41 PM
 
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"Morally, I agree the situation is infuriating: if the Mom considers your friend enough of a father that he should pay child support, why did she think she had no responsibility to let him develop a relationship with the child, until she needed money? It's despicable."

It's infuriating no matter what the details turn out to be, but I would not be surprised at all to find out that the Mom has applied for some sort of public benefits, rather than suddenly getting a bee in her bonnet about getting child support from her old boyfriend who might be the father of her child. I feel sorry for him, but about a million times sorrier for his maybe-kid who now has the government looking around for a guy he's never met to award that guy parental rights and stick him with a huge bill. It's a real recipe for a stable and happy blended family - not.
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