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Child support bill from senate on hold in Illinois

In Edgar County, a bill has been drafted that may allow a father to stop paying child support for a young man who is not related to him. This legislation is currently on hold by the Illinois Senate Judiciary Committee, in the hope that the situation can be resolved without submitting the bill to legislation.

The man, who is from Paris, spoke to the Senate Judiciary Committee telling them that he had paid child support to the child's mother for years, thinking the child was his. He did not find out officially until 2011 that the boy, now 13, was not his. The man only met the boy for the first time in 2011, and then realized he probably was not related to the teenager. It was then that he did DNA testing, which proved that to be factual.

Administrative procedures within the Department of Healthcare and Child Services have been unsuccessful in relieving the man of his child support obligations because the statute of limitations -- 2 years -- in which to challenge paternity had passed. The proposed bill, SB 1867, would allow him to challenge the statute of limitations due to the DNA testing he had done in 2011 after meeting his alleged "son" for the first time.

In 2001, the man signed an agreement pledging that if DNA tests proved he was the father, he would be bound to pay child support. However, he did not show up for his DNA testing because there was no reason to doubt the boy was not his. By not showing up, he tacitly agreed to support the boy.

The senator believes that federal guidelines may prohibit a good outcome for the man. The federal regulations only give you a set amount of time and then you are obligated to continue child support no matter what DNA testing proves.

The situation does seem unfair, and officials at the Department of Healthcare and Child Services said that the law does not show common sense when it makes a person pay child support to a boy whom he has only seen two weeks in 13 years and is not his.

If you or a loved one find yourself in a situation like this, you may find that a skilled attorney can guide you to a good resolution.

Source: The News-Gazette, "Child support bill stalls" Tom Kacich, Mar. 05, 2014

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