Justice Elisa Koenderman

 

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The parties were married in 2011 and wife gave birth to son, LP, in 2012. She filed for divorce in 2015, while LP was living with her parents in China, as the parties agreed. LP was returned to the US in 2016 and husband’s request for visitation was granted. Husband now moved for an order for LP to best tested to determine paternity. Wife and attorney for the child opposed. The court stated the presumption a child born during marriage was the biological product of the union was “one of the strongest and most persuasive known to the law.” Also, equitable estoppel prohibited a person from asserting a claim hat would prejudice another. Thus, where husband represented himself to be LP’s father, and it served the child’s best interests, equitable estoppel prevented him from denying paternity. It ruled equitable estoppel protected the status interests of LP—already in a recognized and operative parent-child relationship with husband. The court concluded husband presented no evidence that wife engaged in sexual intercourse with anyone other than himself during the time LP was conceived. Also, husband consistently presented himself as LP’s father in a myriad of ways, thus, failed to rebut the presumption LP was his legitimate child. Hence, a motion for a paternity test was denied.

Justice Elisa Koenderman

 

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The parties were married in 2011 and wife gave birth to son, LP, in 2012. She filed for divorce in 2015, while LP was living with her parents in China, as the parties agreed. LP was returned to the US in 2016 and husband’s request for visitation was granted. Husband now moved for an order for LP to best tested to determine paternity. Wife and attorney for the child opposed. The court stated the presumption a child born during marriage was the biological product of the union was “one of the strongest and most persuasive known to the law.” Also, equitable estoppel prohibited a person from asserting a claim hat would prejudice another. Thus, where husband represented himself to be LP’s father, and it served the child’s best interests, equitable estoppel prevented him from denying paternity. It ruled equitable estoppel protected the status interests of LP—already in a recognized and operative parent-child relationship with husband. The court concluded husband presented no evidence that wife engaged in sexual intercourse with anyone other than himself during the time LP was conceived. Also, husband consistently presented himself as LP’s father in a myriad of ways, thus, failed to rebut the presumption LP was his legitimate child. Hence, a motion for a paternity test was denied.