…. but unfortunately most people only think of paternity fraud as one specific situation. The only type of paternity fraud most people consider is when a man is held financially liable for supporting a child that is not biologically his. I would like to point out that there is more than one type of paternity fraud.
What is Paternity Fraud?
The primary definition of PATERNITY FRAUD is when a man finds out that a child he thought was his is proven to not be his biological child. The fraud involved in this situation is that the man was never informed that he might not be the biological father of a child he considered to be his own flesh and blood.
Paternity fraud is a growing problem in our society. This is especially true now that we have DNA tests that are proving that some men are not the biological fathers of the children they have been raising as their own.
Unfortunately most people only think of paternity fraud as the situation where a man is held liable for a child that is not biologically his. I would like to point out that there are several types of paternity fraud.
Here are some questions to have in mind when considering this topic:
Do children have a right to know whom their biological fathers or biological parents are?
Do fathers have a right to be involved in the lives of their biological children based solely on biology?
Are fathers given any reproductive choices before and after a child is born?
Do men and women both have a right to reproductive choices and parental self-determination?
Does a potential biological father have a right to know if a pregnancy exists?
Is DNA the only important issue in paternity?
First we need to ask, "what is paternity" and consider what the definition of a "parent" should be?
The concept of who is a parent is not as simple as it once was. Now we have 37% of our children who are born outside of marriage. There are surrogate mothers, sperm donors, egg donors, artificial insemination, invetro fertilization, and the always-popular adultery. Who knows what else can now be considered when it comes to determining parentage.
The birth mother is obviously a parent?
What if the birth mother is not the biological parent?
The biological "DNA" parents within the institution of marriage?
The biological "DNA" parents outside of marriage?
The child born outside of marriage that is accepted and held by the biological father to be his own child?
The child that is born within a marriage who is accepted by a husband who is not the biological father?
Is a man who was wrongfully informed he was a biological father and participated as a father for a number of years really a father? And what are his rights and choices when he finds out the child is not biologically his?
If you have considered the options listed above then you should start questioning the definition of paternity. For instance in the first case above describing the birth mother as the mother or parent could be wrong if she was a surrogate mother artificially inseminated with a donor embryo from biological parents. This gets even more complicated when we start looking at other medical procedures widely used today. We now have sperm and egg donors, artificial insemination, self-insemination, frozen sperm (that can and has been used for fertilization after the death of the sperm donor), frozen eggs and embryos, and surrogate mothers.
Now we need to add into the discussion the ability of women control their parental options. They can choose abortion, the legal abandonment their children or they can put them up for adoption. These are parental rights and choices that let women absolve themselves of all legal and financial parental liabilities and responsibilities. Women are not forced to become mothers or the parents of their own children.
In this day and age we can see that the definition of parent can become very complicated and because of this the definitions of paternity fraud can also become complicated.
Paternity fraud has a direct connection to the child support system. A paternity judgment real or otherwise creates a direct access point to the alleged fathers income or wealth. Child support obligations are a deep pocket liability and is based on the man’s gross income, ability to pay, or presumed ability to pay. This liability could take up to and beyond 25% of a man’s gross income. So a forced Child Support obligation is very valuable source of free money. Women use this Child Support system through paternity fraud to gain access to a man’s money without having to give anything in return. There are no parental rights connected to the taking of money from a man who is considered as the legal father in the courts.
Here are some case examples of paternity fraud.
The child didn’t exist:
The worst case of paternity fraud is when a man is held financially liable for a child that doesn’t even exist.
Such a case was recently exposed in Texas where a man was forced to pay child support for a child for about 5 years and at a cost of more than $20,000. He said that there was no such child and the courts ignored his demand that the child be presented and tested for a biological connection. When the courts finally demanded that the mother produce the child it was found that no child existed. See more on this by researching this case
Viola Trevino <http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,141525,00.html>
This is when a woman has decided that a man or sexual partner would be a good candidate for paternity liability. In some of these cases the women lie about birth control, which is sometimes called contraceptive fraud. In other cases women have taken sperm from condoms and inseminated themselves in order to get pregnant. Any man can be a victim of this type of fraud but the more successful the man the bigger he is as a target for this type of paternity fraud.
Mistaken identity or give any mans name:
For women to get the financial benefits for illegitimate children they are required to name the father. This is required both for welfare benefits and in paternity cases. When women apply for government benefits the government automatically goes after the alleged biological father named by the mother and they force the women involved to participate. Some women have multiple sexual partners and they may not really know whom the sperm donor or biological father is but they must give a name in order to keep the funding process going.
The major problem with this process for the men is that they must respond to the accusation in order to fight for their rights or find out the truth. This response takes money because it is expected that lawyers will file the response. In many cases the men can’t afford to respond and will be found to be a father by default.
It is important to note that these so called fathers are only found to be so in order to make them financially liable; they are extended no parental rights or responsibilities. In Los Angeles County the paternity by default numbers are in excess of 70%. These are cases where no DNA tests are ever done. In some of these cases the men are legally found to be fathers and forced into financial liability without ever being served with the original papers that accuse them. They didn’t know this was occurring until their money was being taken. For the Child Support agencies and family courts the goal is to get the money not the truth, nor do they care about the children involved in any way. If they did they would not be part of a system that promotes illegitimacy and they would be protecting the children’s right to have a father involved in their lives.
The Taron James Case
illustrates another case under this heading. He was in the military when this case came up. He thought he had the case settled through the military and that it was over. He later found out that the courts had continued the case and that he was being held liable by default. He knew that he was not the father and the DNA tests taken proved that he was not the father, but he was not relieved of this financial liability. The courts explanation is basically that he had missed a 2-year deadline to fight the case.
The family courts feel that the money has to come from somewhere and he was already paying the bill through wage garnishment so the court was happy. This case was finally overturned in the higher courts after Taron had spent over $45,000 fighting. Perhaps the most enlightening part of this travesty was the courts decision to not publish the case so it could not be used as a legal precedent. For more information search for the Taron James Case.
Marriage and Divorce for profit:
Some women get married with the intention of divorcing after having children and investing a few years into the process. Community property and child support laws make this a lucrative scam. Athletes and celebrities are big targets for this kind of fraud.
Look at what Anna Nicole Smith did in her marriage to a man old enough to be her grandfather.
Another example of this is the case against Kirk Kerkorian a billionaire who owns MGM Studios and a number of casinos. His ex wanted $320,000 a month in child support for a child that was not even biologically his. He only married the mother to give the child a name and a future. He did not volunteer to be held financially liable through the courts for an insane amount of money. Mr. Kerkorian was 84 years old and his ex wife was 34-year-old ex-tennis player Lisa Bonder. Search Kirk Kerkorian for more information.
High profile cases involving millionaires make the news but you don’t have to be insanely rich to be a victim of this type of paternity fraud. Any man who is successful or the possibility of being successful is a target.
Some women decide that they want to become mothers but are not interested in being married. These women will date men in order to consider them as sperm donors. They look at the personality traits of the men and also consider their financially ability to be held liable for child support payments.
Then they get pregnant and have a child or children knowing that they will receive 18 plus years of support. They get almost all of the benefits of marriage without the marriage or the man.
I know of a case where a woman has two illegitimate children, the first fathered by a doctor and the second by a restaurant manager. In the second case the restaurant manager was in love with the woman and hoped and expected to marry her and become a family. But it was quickly apparent that she was not interested in marriage or the family concept. After getting pregnant she almost immediately broke up with him and told him that she didn’t want him involved as a father. She also told him how much child support he would be obligated to pay based on his income. She had done her homework and knew what to expect. This father has been able to establish some of his parental rights and to build a relationship with his daughter, but it has been at a high cost financially and emotionally.
Conception Fraud / Paternity for profit.
There are cases where women who are dating men decide to trap them into marriage or fatherhood hoping for a continuing relationship. These women decide unilaterally to become pregnant and have a child without the consent of the man. They will quit using contraceptives to intentionally become pregnant with out informing the man or getting his consent. Some do this to hopefully trap a man into a long-term relationship and others do it specifically to become a single mother and have the man obligated to support her. In such cases the woman gets nearly all of the financial benefits of marriage without being married or tied to the man. This could become 18 to 20 years of financial security if the man has the financial ability to pay.
A professional football player was recently held liable for $15,000 per month in child support. This was a child born outside of marriage. Another point that can be made from this situation is that $500.00 per day seems to be a lot of money to spend on a child. How can child support of $500.00 per day be considered a fair amount of child support? The paternity liability over 18 years will be $3 million dollars. Where is the father’s parental discretion on how to support and raise his child? Where are his rights to parental choices like those given to women?
The primary concern with paternity fraud is related to cases where men find out that they are not biological fathers, and that they are not being relieved of the financial liability in the courts. It is wrong to collect money from a non-biological parent who had no prior knowledge he was not a biological father. This is a fraud committed by the woman who began the deception in the first place when she lied about the conception of the child.
Unfortunately many of the men asking to be relieved of their financial liability for children whom they did not father believe that the biological father should be automatically held liable for the child. This displaced liability takes paternity fraud and changes it into financial fraud.
When one man is proven to not be a biological father why should we then seek the man who is? Isn’t this a matter of displaced or misplaced liability? This is not a matter of finding a father for a child but a way to find another man to hold financially liable. This is a financial witch-hunt!
Why should a man who previously had no idea that he was a biological father be automatically held financially liable based on DNA excluding a man who was the victim of fraud?
Doesn’t that make the bio daddy/sperm donor an additional victim because of the woman’s ongoing deceit?
Should he automatically be held financially liable in such a case when he is also a victim of the woman’s fraud and deceit? Making him financially liable is not a solution to her fraud.
I think if possible he should be notified of the situation and given the opportunity or choice to be a father. But he should not be held financially liable just so this mother will have another source of income.
This continued funding is empowering a woman who has already committed fraud by not naming the correct father (or by not disclosing that there could be more than one possible father) to continue the fraud. This allows her to continue her financial gains no matter what the circumstances of her child’s biological parentage might be.
I know of a current case where the man involved is being held liable for a 13 year old child that he did not know existed. The only issues involved in the court proceeding are DNA and money. There is no consideration given to the possibility of parental rights or time lost as a parent because of this fraud. No consideration is being given to the possibility of him becoming a real father to the child or if he wants to be involved at this point in time. Is it even possible for him to be an involved parent at this time? It is also important to include that he has been married for a number of years and has a family of his own that is being disrupted by this case. Yet if the court has it’s way he will become a financial donor for this child.
We must give more consideration to this topic than just the consideration of the "duped dad". The man who finds out that the child he thought was his isn’t. There are a number of types of paternity fraud and the underlying contributing factor in almost every case is the financial benefits and entitlements given to the woman who perpetrated the deception in the first place.
By John Buethe.
Director of M.A.D. (Men Against Discrimination) MEN UNITED
www.madmenunited.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org