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If you were never married to the child's mother, do you still have to pay ?

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Question: If you were never married to the child's mother, do you still have to pay ?
Answer: Yes. The obligation to support a child is not conditioned by marriage. If you are a parent, you have responsibility to financially support your offspring. Your parental responsibilities can be legally determined either through your acknowledgment that you are a parent, by the fact that you had welcomed the child into your home as your own, or as established by a paternity test. State laws vary somewhat on the definition of a parent, so if there is some doubt about your parentage, you will want to consult with a family law attorney in your state.

It also happens at times that a man who fathered a child may not be asked to pay child support until the child's mother receives public assistance. In that case, the government may come to the father seeking back child support to reimburse the government for their assistance payments. Many fathers have been "blindsided" by these orders many years after the fact.

Back to the Child Support FAQ

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