Child support enforcement in Michigan serves a very important function, but sometimes the laws surrounding child support can be convoluted and have unintended consequences. Michigan residents may find it interesting to know that a man is being compelled by the state to pay child support for a child that he did not father; if he fails to do so, he may go to jail. The man notes that DNA testing has shown that he is not the father and has vowed to not give in to the state's demand that he pay past-due child support. According to the man, nearly 30 years ago, a woman he dated became pregnant and gave birth to a baby boy.
The woman fell on hard times and decided to look to the government for assistance. When she applied to enroll in the state's welfare system to start receiving welfare checks, she was informed that she must identify the father of the baby. In response, he identified the man in question as the biological father of her baby.
Once the father was identified, the state immediately started to put together a paternity and child support case against the man in order to recoup the welfare payments that the mother and child had been receiving. The state claims the man was served papers informing him of the paternity case against him. However, it just so happened that the man was incarcerated at the time that the paperwork indicates he was served notice. The MI Department of Corrections has noted that this is not possible.
In fact, the man claims that he only found out about the case against him many years later when he was pulled over for a routine traffic stop and arrested for being delinquent in his child support obligation. Despite the evidence showing that the man is not the biological father of the child, but the state apparently is still not relenting in prosecuting him for the child support obligation. The man's case currently has been scheduled for a hearing before a judge.
Source: WXZY Detroit, "Detroit man turns himself in after not paying child support for a child that is not his," Kim Russell, Jan. 23, 2015