She gave birth to a child that was not mine in 2005 only a few months after our divorce. She hid the fact that she was pregnant during our divorce proceedings.
If I had known of her infidelity and the fact she was pregnant with another man’s child while we were married I never would have agreed to many of the settlements we reached in our divorce judgment.
Please advise if there are any actions I can take against her for concealing information and essentially lying throughout our divorce proceedings.
To answer your question, I can certainly understand your level of frustration given the situation that you have described. However, there are several reasons why you may not be able to pursue a case against your former wife.
First, your dissolution for marriage becomes final after 30 days unless you file an appeal.
Since you did not appeal your judgment within that timeframe, your case appears to be time-barred.
Moreover, where I practice the law provides that you have 10 years to discover a fraud, and from the date of discovery, 5 years to bring forth your case. Since you discovered that she was pregnant in 2005, you would have had to file a fraud claim against her by no later than 2010.
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Keep in mind that the standard for proving fraud is extremely strict. As such, your fraud claim may be weak due to the fact that she could allege that she did not know she was pregnant during the time when you were married, including during the divorce proceeding, and also, the child could still very well be yours.
Only a DNA test can establish the paternity of a child.
Additionally, any child conceived during a marriage may be considered to be the child of the marriage without proof to the contrary (i.e., via a DNA test). Again, if you had immediately sought a DNA test when the child was born and if it had shown that the child was not yours, you would have had a stronger fraud case that was also not time-barred.
Regardless of the foregoing, I would still talk to an attorney in order to further discuss the details of your case. Again, since I am not aware of all of the facts of your case, I cannot render any specific legal advice on divorce.
Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men.
To arrange an initial consultation to discuss divorce rights for men with a Cordell & Cordell attorney, including Jennifer de Lyon Stralka, a St. Louis divorce lawyer, contact Cordell & Cordell Law Firm.