Parents have the legal duty to provide financial support for their offspring, and few dispute the necessity of that law. Even so, some of the child support rulings on the books can seem more out of airport novels than real life. If you think you've heard about unusual child support cases, read on for the real deal.
Perils of Trusting Your Spouse
It's easy to resent having to make those monthly support payments, but nobody has more reason to feel bitter than Richard Parker. He thought the worst had happened when his wife divorced him and obtained custody of their 3-year-old son. But 16 months later, a DNA test revealed that the boy had actually been fathered by someone else. Parker immediately asked the court to revoke the order requiring him to pay $1,200 in monthly child support. The Florida Supreme Court denied that request because he missed the one-year post-divorce deadline for challenging the support order--Parker will pay a total of more than $200,000 to support another man's child.
When the Impossible Happens
One man who might compete with Parker in fury is Steve Barreras, who was married for some years to Viola Trevino. When they divorced, their children were grown, so no child support was awarded. But soon Trevino returned to court asking for child support for a child she said was born after the divorce. Even though Barreras knew that Trevino had a tubal ligation and he had gotten a vasectomy during their marriage, Trevino persuaded the judge to order the child support payments using fake DNA evidence and forged documents. Barreras spent over $26,000 in child support payments and legal fees before the fraud was established and Trevino sent to jail.
Your Brother's Keeper
Brotherly love only goes so far when it comes to child support. Twin brothers -- Raymon and Richard Miller -- are no longer speaking to each over a paternity issue. One of them is the father of a 3-year-old daughter, the other is her uncle, but nobody knows for sure which is which. Both twins were having hook-ups with Holly Marie Adams, so when she got pregnant and brought Raymon into court for child support, he pulled his brother Richard in after him. Paternity testing revealed that both twins had a 99.9 percent probability of being the daddy, but the court still ruled that Raymon would be considered the legal father, a ruling he is testing on appeal.
Third Time's the Charm
When Shakespeare wrote that one man in his time plays many roles, he had no idea that Fernando Lugo would become the poster child for that concept. Lugo served as a Roman Catholic bishop for decades before he was elected to the post of president of Paraguay. It seems he was a busy man during his time in the church, however. After his election to the presidency, Viviana Carrillo filed a paternity suit against him, claiming he had fathered her child when she was 16, an allegation he initially denied, then admitted. Lugo, now paying child support for Carrillo's child, has since been hit with two additional paternity claims.