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AttorneyKaren, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 371
Experience:  Over 14 years as a Family Law Attorney; Temporary Judge Award (2008)
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My husband and I have been married for 4 years. He recently

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My husband and I have been married for 4 years. He recently received a phone call from his ex girlfriend saying that she has a 5 year old son that she knows is his. From the brief jist of it I get that she had her boyfriend at the time sign the aknowledgement of paternity paper, and he is listed on teh birth certificate. She's currently going thru a custody battle with him and wants my husband to now take a paternity test 5 years later to prove he's the father. My husband wants nothing to do with their dispute, and as far as he is concerned it's not fair to uproot this child from the father and family he knows over biology. Is it possible that he can be court ordered to take a paternity test? The other man obviously knows he might not be the father now, but doesn't want to give up the child.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  AttorneyKaren replied 7 years ago.

Hello and thank you for your question--

Below, here is a somewhat recent case in PA with a similar fact pattern. In that case the court held the mother perpetrated a fraud and the court did not order the other alleged father (like your husband) take a DNA test. Please read over, and it appears your husband is in a good position because of this case.

Best wishes in this case--

Gebler v. Gatti, 2006 PA Super 19; 2006 Pa. Super. LEXIS 47 (February 2, 2006)

Case Law Development: Failure to Inform Father of Possible Doubts as to Paternity Constitutes Fraud so as to Prevent Application of Paternity by Estoppel

The Pennsylvania Superior Court reversed a trial court's judgment of paternity in a case involving an unmarried man who had accepted his paramour's child as his own and paid support for about a year and a half, at which point, at the urging of his fiance' and friends, he obtained a DNA test and discovered that he was not the child's biological father. The trial court held that he was estopped from denying paternity.

On appeal, the court reversed, holding that, because Mother had never told the alleged father that she had been having sexual relations with another man during their seven-year-relationship, there was sufficient proof of fraud that the doctrine of paternity by estoppel should not apply. The court's observed that: "Clearly, Mother is holding all the cards here; only she knew that another man might be the biological father and only she could inform Gatti. The mother is the only one who knows who the possible fathers are, at least until a paternity test is done. Mother's failure to provide Gatti with the information that only she knew, and which she knew if she divulged would provide Gatti with a clear understanding of the matter, lulled him into believing he was the father. Mother concealed that which should have been disclosed, and Gatti acted accordingly. The trial court noted that Mother might have thought the child was most likely Gatti's rather than the other man she was having relations with. However, she was the one that knew she was having relations with someone else and never revealed it to Gatti. This constitutes fraud or at least misrepresentation..."

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Apparently when they split up she was having relations with the two. She apparently called my husband a month later and said she was pregnant but was unsure who the father was.....he didn't hear from her again until after the child was born and all papers signed. I'm led to believe she deceived the other man into thinking it was his. Now that it suits her needs she wants to have my husband tested.

Expert:  AttorneyKaren replied 7 years ago.
I still think that she had perpetrated a fraud on all, including the child. Since she was the one holding all the cards, as the court in PA stated, she should not be rewarded by her fradulent wrongdoings. Do not allow your husband to take a DNA test unless it is court ordered. Even then I would hire counsel to object to this test and to show the court that she was fraudulent.
Hope this helps--AttyKaren
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