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Make sure you handle paternity issues right away

Determining paternity is something that is crucial for a host of reasons. Many people think of this issue as a way for fathers to assert their rights to be involved with raising their children. But, there is also a flip side to this coin.

In some cases, paternity tests are done to exclude a man as the father of a child. If you think that you aren't a child's father and the mother is asserting that you are, it is usually best to get a test done. One man's $65,000 story proves this point.

The man in the story was recently ordered to pay $65,000 in child support payments for a child who he didn't father. The man is currently married with three biological children. His story starts more than 16 years ago.

The case against him alleges that he was ordered to pay child support for the child, but he claims he didn't know. He hasn't made payments in 16 years. Ultimately, it was determined that the child isn't his child. Texas law doesn't take that into account in his case. As the law stands now, he is still liable for the child support that accrued up until the point that he was definitively ruled out as the child's father.

This is a very sad case for a number of reasons. First, this man is on the hook for something that he wasn't even part of. Second, this child has grown up probably being misinformed about her father. Third, it shows that there are some improvements that Texas might need to consider for the child support system.

If you are in the midst of a paternity case, don't put off getting a DNA test. Instead, get it taken care of so that you don't rack up child support arrears like this man did.

Source: AOL, "Texas man ordered to pay $65,000 in child support for kid that isn't his," Alex Lasker, July 24, 2017

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