Legal Question in Family Law in Massachusetts

31 years ago I had a daughter, her father denied her in court, and as a young single women I couldn't bear going through the degrading process of answering all questions the court wanted answered in order to prove he was the father. (DNA testing was not as well known)

six months ago, my daughter met her father for the first time...he was very happy to finally meet her. He introduced her to his other daughters, told all of his friends about his "other" daughter.

So here is my question he never paid me a cent in child support. Can I know go after him since he openly admits to being her father?

Asked on 10/19/13, 11:50 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

I doubt the court would go back 31 years. Your daughter should get him to acknowledge her legally, so if he dies she does not have to contest his will and prove his paternity.

Anything he provides to your daughter at this stage should be viewed as unanticipated benefit for her.

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Answered on 10/19/13, 12:02 pm

Raymond Weicker Qua, Hall, Harvey & Walsh

There is no statute of limitations (a time bar) imposed on determining paternity, whether by acknowledgement or by DNA testing, in Massachusetts. For inheritance and benefit purposes, your daughter should pursue this.

As for obtaining a child support order at this point, unless there was some issue of fraud in the initial filing and court proceedings, it is unlikely a court would issue a new order retroactive for that period of time. You may want to obtain copies of your original case and have them reviewed by someone specializing in this area of law.

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Answered on 10/19/13, 10:07 pm

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