According to reports, a Michigan man recently received a notice from the Ottawa County Friends of the Court office stating that he owed nearly $8,500 in back support for a child that is not biologically his. The child was born to his ex-wife during their separation proceedings.
Michigan residents will find it interesting to learn that according to a 1956 Michigan law titled the Paternity Act, it is perfectly legal for the state to order the divorced man to pay child support for the child that is not biologically his but was born during their divorce proceedings before the divorce was final.
Under the Paternity Act, if a married woman has a child with a man other than her husband, then the biological father does not have any legal rights even if the biological father wants to be part of the child’s life and pay child support. In this particular case, the court papers indicated that the child is not the biological offspring of the man, nevertheless, under the 1956 Michigan Law, which one lawmaker has labeled “outrageous,” the divorced man was ordered to pay the child support to his ex-wife.
The actual biological father, on the other hand, has been denied the right to see his child. According to a representative for the court, regardless of who the biological father is the best interest of the child is taken into account, and, in this particular case, it was determined that the ex-husband was in a better financial position to take care of the child.
However, shortly after an investigation was begun regarding the issue, a judge issued an order stating the non-biological father was not responsible for the child. Further, the biological father was allowed to see the child for a short time but is still fighting a court battle to get legal rights to see his child.
Source: Huffington Post, “Child Support Law Requires Man To Pay For Another Man’s Child,” July 29, 2013