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Lady Themis
Lady Themis, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7751
Experience:  Divorce, child custody, child support, etc.
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I was just told that I have a 16 year old daughter. the mother

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I was just told that I have a 16 year old daughter. the mother was married and her husband sign the birth certificate. We live in missouri. Can she get back child support if a dna test is done?
Thank you for your question.

No. Although you may be the biological father, because the husband signed the birth certificate and was the legal parent by virtue of the marriage, he was the one obligated to support the child. The court will in some cases award retroactive support, but normally will only do so in cases where the child was not actually supported by another father figure.

It was also be inequitable to order you to pay for 16 years of support where you did not know that you were the father of a child.

It is possible that the court could order support going forward, but likely only if the husband is no longer supporting the child for whatever reason.

I hope this answers your question. Please let me know if you have any follow-up questions, which I am happy to answer. Once you are satisfied, please kindly rate my service, as that is how I am compensated by the website. Thank you.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I have asked her to get a dna test. Can she do this?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Can she order a dna test to be done? and how does that work with the man that is on the birth certificate?

The court can order genetic testing if there is reasonable suspicion to believe that you are the father.

In researching the statutes on this, I found section 210-828 regarding retroactive support. It states "2. A parent's retroactive liability to another party for reimbursement of necessary support provided by that party to the child for whom a parent and child relationship is established under sections 210.817 to 210.852 is limited to a period of five years next preceding the commencement of the action. " That indicates that the court may award retroactive support, limited to 5 years prior to the commencement of the action.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

So Im a little confused. They can go back 5 years after dna test proves im the father. What about the father that is on the birth certificate?

Retroactive support is generally in the discretion of the court. This merely limits the court's ability to go back more than 5 years. It is still possible that where the husband was supporting the child for her entire life and treated her as his child, the court would not order you to pay any retroactive child support.
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