Avoiding Child Support For Child That Isn’t Mine

Question:Cordell & Cordell attorney Andrea Miller

My wife cheated on me and moved in with her boyfriend in 2006 and moved to another state after that and I haven’t been able to find her since. About 4 months ago she called me and said she was pregnant with another man’s baby and it’s due in August, and she wants the divorce now before the baby born. But I don’t think there is any way to get one done before then and I don’t want to end up paying child support for a kid that isn’t mine even though it will be born while are potentially still legally married.

What can I do? She is in Indiana now and I’m in New York. So do I file in New York even though she hasn’t lived here for years?


Answer:

I am not licensed to practice law in the state of New York and therefore cannot give you the specifics of how this issue would be dealt with in New York, though I can provide general, advice for divorce. I would speak to a lawyer who is licensed in your state for advice. I am licensed to practice in North Carolina and therefore my analysis will focus on how North Carolina may deal with the issue that you have presented.

In North Carolina, child support is only owed by the parties who conceived the child.  Therefore, you are not responsible for the child unless she can prove the child is yours.  If she were to file a child support action against you, she would have to prove paternity, at least in North Carolina.

In North Carolina, to obtain a divorce, there must be residency/domicile established.  One of the parties must have lived in North Carolina for 6 months prior to filing.  Because I do not practice in either New York or Indiana I do not know what the residency requirements are for those states in order to provide specific advice for divorce.  If you meet all the requirements then you can file for divorce in that state.

I would speak to an attorney in New York and/or in Indiana about this issue as well. Cordell & Cordell has attorneys in Indiana who may be able to assist you.

Once again, I am only practiced in North Carolina and therefore you must obtain advice for divorce from either a New York and/or Indiana attorney.

 

Andrea Miller is a Staff Attorney in the Charlotte, N.C., office of Cordell & Cordell where she practices domestic relations exclusively. Ms. Miller is licensed in the state of North Carolina. Ms. Miller received her undergraduate degree in History and her Juris Doctor from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  While in law school, she on the Client Counseling Team for Moot Court and became a board member. Ms. Miller also participated in UNC’s Legal Assistance Clinic whereby she helped represent indigent clients obtain legal counsel primarily in the area of domestic relations.

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