Can a Non-Biological Parent Be Held Responsible for Child Support in Divorce?

In many circumstance the answer is no. However, if the non-biological parent proclaimed this child to be his or hers and not just to the general public, but to you and the child, there stands a reasonable chance that he could be found liable for child support.

The child support order focus primarily on the best interests of the child. If the non-biological parent gave the child his last name, it represents the willingness to accept the child as their own by his own consent. In the case of L.M.S. v. S.M.S., 105 Wis. 2d 118, 312 N.W.2d 853 (Ct. App. 1981), the husband was responsible for support based on his acceptance of responsibility for the child. The specifics might be different on a case by case basis, but the acceptance of responsibility is similar. A court would take this into consideration as well. 

There is a possibility of having the court require a paternal DNA test for the person in question and the child. In this instance, if the non-biological parent is presumed by the court to be inequitable. 


References: L.M.S. v. S.M.S., 105 Wis. 2d 118, 312 N.W.2d 853 (Ct. App. 1981)


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