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« No New KY "To Be Published" Family Law Cases This Week | Main | National Center for Missing & Exploited Children Announces Creation of an Attorney Manual for Litigating Hague Convention Cases »

October 05, 2007

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As suspected, the Florida bio-dad did appeal the decision to the Supreme Court of Florida (case #237 http://www.4dca.org/), and it only took 15 days.

Depending how long it takes the Kentucky Supreme Court to issue the Ricketts v. Rhoades opinion, we might see the Florida bio-dad using the forthcoming KY decision as a persuasive authority? Assuming the former is remanded, which most family law practitioners in Kentucky predict. Yet it would be very unlikely the FL father would use a KY decision considering the vast differences in the statutory schemes. Even a simple statutory analysis demonstrates how the two are like apples and oranges.

Another odd decision in the patch work quilt that is family law in this country. What I cannot understand is the way that the Florida courts have made genetic paternity irrelevant in such cases (although genetic maternity remains essential) BUT if the mother here was single and needed financial support, genetic paterntity is the overriding factor. Even if a purported father is part of a ongoing marriage, the courts have no problem forcing a paternity test upon him, no problem in damaging his marriage by forcing an unwanted paternity upon him, no problem with tossing his marital privacy aside, forcing child support upon him, etc.

The father in my hypothetical paternity case made the voluntary decision to have sex with a woman outside of his marriage, therefore paternity and the inherent duties of paterntiy are the outcome. However the Florida courts seem to believe that this woman who voluntarily had sex with a man outside of her marriage, should not be forced to determine the paternity of her child; at this point since the husband is aware of her infidelity, forcing a DNA test could not cause further marital damages. Finally it appears that while the courts are eager to impose the duties of paternity, they are unwilling to concurrently extend any rights arising out of such paternity.

What an odd post considering the stark differences between Kentucky and Florida statutory schemes on this issue. It also seems strange considering the bio-dad might appeal the 4th District's decision to Florida's Supreme Court. Florida statute provides a 30 day window to appeal Court of Appeal decisions.

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