What if I Think I am Not the Father, and How Reliable are Genetic Tests?
One of the rights available to the man, alleged or believed to be the father, is genetic testing. In this day and age, genetic testing is such that it is almost foolproof. The results will either come back as 0% or 99.9% positive that the man is in fact the biological father of the child. It is important to understand that the opportunity for genetic testing is only available at one time and that is before the court enters that initial acknowledgement of paternity. It is only in the rarest of circumstances that a father can come back after the fact and ask for genetic testing.
It is presumed that a child born during a marriage is a marital child and the husband is the father.
There are some cases where years later, a father, for various reasons has reason to question whether or not he is the biological father of the child he has been raising. These are very difficult cases. The first thing that you should know is the courts are not often inclined to bastardize a child by making a determination that the husband and father is not technically the father of the child. These issues are very difficult and rarely allowed to be entertained by the court. The reason being is that we are talking about a child and the relationship the child has developed with the father. It is only in the rarest of circumstances that the court will allow a party to argue or even offer genetic testing once the relationship between the father and the child has already occurred. A father should not even consider attempting to ask the court to make a finding that he is not the father of a child without consulting with an experienced family law attorney. These issues are very complex and again it is very rare for the court to grant relief from the marital presumption or paternity adjudication that determined the man to be the father of that child.