A Florida man has been forced to pay child support, despite taking a DNA test which proves he’s not the father of the child in question.
Joseph Sinawa had believed he was the father of the child and went to court to file for visitation. A judge then ordered him to take a paternity test which proved he was not, in fact, the child’s father.
“I was emotionally devastated,” Sinawa said. At that time, Sinawa was giving 1/3 of his paycheck to the child’s mother but soon sought to reverse that after learning he was not the child’s biological father.
The child’s mother agrees with Sinawa, but the state is saying he should still pay. Though both Sinawa and the child’s mother have told the judge he should be freed from the responsibility, the Florida Department of Revenue determined Sinawa should still pay.
“I’ve never seen this happen before,” Brandon Beardsley, a local lawyer, told First Coast News. “It was a waste of Florida taxpayer resources to appeal a decision when the end result is going to be the same.”
“You’re just making a [man] pay child support every month now for an extended period of time, which he should not be paying, until he follows these procedures,” Beardsley continued. “The problem with the department of revenue is that the state is their client, not the mom.”
Beardsley, though, is confident Sinawa will eventually not have to pay child support, though it may involve a lot of time and money. Sinawa is awaiting his next day in court.
When I’m not hanging out with my three-year-old and husband in Brooklyn, I’m busy writing stories for Mamas Uncut and managing PR + Marketing for Magnolia Bakery, based in New York City. On weekends, you can usually find me at a local park or playground pushing my daughter on the swings, “researching” the best almond croissants in Park Slope or launching into impromptu family dance parties at home, the sidewalk or, every once in awhile, a restaurant bathroom. I’m still trying to master the whole parenting thing, but I have learned that copious amounts of coffee, humor and humility are involved on a daily basis.
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