I’m paying child support on a child that might not be mine. We were married at the time, split up, and then got back together. It was during our second go around that I found out she was pregnant. How do I go about getting a DNA test arranged to see if the child is truly mine or not?
You do not indicate whether you are paying support after a court order finding you to be the father or as part of a divorce proceeding. If you have been legally determined to be the father, either by voluntary legal acknowledgment, by marriage, or by court order, you may be precluded from further challenge to paternity. Many states limit the ability to seek a determination of non-paternity after an initial legal determination of paternity in order to provide finality to parentage cases. You will need to promptly consult a qualified domestic litigation attorney to determine what, if any, proceedings may be pursued at this stage.
If you are able to pursue a determination of non-paternity, the court may order the DNA testing. Any DNA testing will be performed by an accredited laboratory that provides a complete chain of custody including positive verification as to the samples collected to assure the test results will be admissible in court.
Richard Coffee is a Litigation Manager in the Belleville Illinois office of Cordell & Cordell. He is an experienced divorce attorney whose practice is devoted to domestic litigation. He is licensed in the State of Illinois and is admitted to practice law in the U.S. District Courts for Northern, Central and Southern Illinois.
Mr. Coffee has extensive domestic litigation trial experience representing clients in courts throughout Illinois on all aspects of domestic litigation, including the representation of clients who are current or retired military personnel with issues under the Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act and the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act, clients involved in state court jurisdictional disputes due to the relocation of one or both parties from or to Illinois, and clients with government or private pension benefit valuation and division issues.