Court Orders Man To Pay Child Support of Twins Even After DNA Tests Show That He Is Not The Father

maple leafMadam Justice Katherine van Rensburg of Ontario Superior Court does not appear to believe that being an actual parent to have to pay child support. Pasqualino Cornelio began paying child support for the twins after separating from Anciolina Cornelio, but later demanded DNA testing. It found that he was not the father of the twins, now 16. That does not matter, ruled Madam van Rensburg. He must continue to pay.

The husband argued that Anciolina never revealed the deception in their 2002 agreement. However, the judge noted that “Cornelio denies knowledge of who the twins’ biological father might be. In fact, she claims to have no memory of an extramarital affair preceding their birth, which she attributes to the medication she was taking at the time.”

The court insisted that whether or not he was the father — his long (and mistaken) relationship to the girls was sufficient to require him to continue to pay support.

This is not the only such ruling of a non-parent forced to pay child support, here.

For the full story, click here

20 thoughts on “Court Orders Man To Pay Child Support of Twins Even After DNA Tests Show That He Is Not The Father”

  1. He should move to Georgia, or was it Tennessee or Kentucky?, and then have this child support obligation adjudicated. If the DNA test is negative, BAM! no child support, and no arrears.

  2. Bottom line is that women lie! Women who don’t want to me mothers have two options: abortion and adoption. But men who find themselves in positions where they don’t want to be fathers have no escape! The entire system is not fair! Furthermore, I feel that the courts hide behind “the best interest of the children” in order to side with women. At the end of the day. They can make the man pay for the children… but they can’t force him to spend time with them. If I was him, I’d send them all to hell. I would tell the children how low down and dirty their mother is.I would tell them that if they want a father, they need to make their mother locate their real father. I don’t care what she says… if they get hurt and need blood, she’s call their real fatehr. I promise you! If they have a nervous break down… so what. Let their mother use their ill gotten child support to pay for coulseling. At this rate, we are now subject to pay for each other’s crimes…. despite the evidence. Hell, why take the DNA in the first place… Lets just all pick out a Daddy that we like … and Roll with it. In Fact, I think I will start off by charging Warren Buffet…. event though I am black… even though we’ve never met!

  3. Neil M,
    The problem with logic is that it is not immutable as various philosophers would have you believe and while the most valid way to base a legal system is logic, sometimes that logic can lead to unfair results. I actually agree with you about laws being passed, or adjudicated viscerally. That makes for terrible law and jurisprudence. My point in this instance though is that it has to be decided by a balancing of equities that does not lend itself to the proposition that there is one logically correct answer. My personal belief is that the Court decided it based on the best possible “logic” of the law, rather than by the logic of let’s say for instance Aristotle, etc.

    Buddha’s points were excellent ones and their internal logic was clear, however, I don’t think they would lead to the best legal decision. Trouble is I think there is no one who can truly judge what that “most equitable” would be and so we have to rely on the frailty of the court system.

  4. Mike Spindell-

    “I do see the validity in your points and as usual follow the clear logic of your statements. However, this case doesn’t lend itself to truly logical resolution.”

    I’m not certain that laws should be passed or adjudicated by means other than logic, because that gets you inconsistent, emotion-based results.

  5. These are children, not proof of infidelity. A person who will not love a child needs to get ahold of themselves. Again, hate one’s partner all you want. That is a separate issue from the relationship with a child. Mike pointed out how much one gains from a loving relationship with one’s children. Only a fool or a person with a heart of stone would jeopardize that. Adults need to hold children, not money, not bitterness against a partner, in their hearts.

  6. What makes you think that he even wants visitation now. I’m suspecting that he actually agreed to the liar’s request for less visitation. Would you want to face the proof of your wife’s infidelity, even for a second? So Ms. Cornelio gets everything she wants. Less visitation, more child support.

  7. If the well fare of the children and justice are the issues, and the father has had a long lasting relationship with the twins, change custody to allow him to continue his relationship with the children and require the mother to pay him support. Any thing short of that works a miscarriage of justice.

  8. Buddha,
    I do see the validity in your points and as usual follow the clear logic of your statements. However, this case doesn’t lend itself to truly logical resolution. We do not know for instance the original circumstance leading to the pregnancy. Was the woman pregant when she married Mr. Cornelio? Has he harbored doubts all these years finally leading to the paternity test as a last straw, when she requested more money. Is the biological father someone who had sex with her once, or was their relationship ongoing? This adds to the conundrum because if it is the result of a casual and consensual liaison 17 years ago isn’t it kind of unfair to inform the bio father of his paternity and slap him with a support order after 17 years of knowledge?

    Marital Law has to be one of the most vexing and complex of legal fields since the permutations of marriage and children are perhaps just somewhat short of infinite. The courts unfortunately have to find some way to make sense of this and find the equity. In this case, given our limited factual knowledge, I think they made a valid ruling. As a proud and loving father I have sacrificed much for my kids and in return have been paid back by their love and by a feeling of accomplishment far greater than anything I’ve achieve in my career. Admittedly then, I couldn’t imagine a situation where I would be lax in my responsibility to provide them sustenance. This despite any wrongs I might think were done to me by their mother. Luckily, that is not my situation, but while I can sympathize with Mr. Cornelio’s outrage, he has a duty to those hebelieved were his children for that many years.

  9. Mike,

    Don’t misconstrue what I’m saying. I’m not saying he shouldn’t support the kids as an ethical matter, I’m saying he shouldn’t be compelled by the courts. The proper target for compulsion should be the biological father. As a purely ethical matter, the man should support the kids if he cared about them at all and helped raise them. It’s the decent and humane thing to do. But court sanction is injustice in light of indisputable (and scientifically verifiable) fact. The job of the judiciary (even in Canada) is as trier of fact, not policy novation – that’s the legislative branch’s bailiwick. And can you really legislate good conscience either from the bench or the legislature? Because that’s what should compel the man – his love for the kids and his conscience. If we were capable of legislating conscience, Cheney would not be. In the case at bar, the court is creating an injustice in the name of protecting not children of an impressionable age, but children on the verge of both physical and legal adulthood capable of dealing with the broader issues. So I don’t think the “protecting the children” policy argument fails, but it certainly is weak. Too weak to validate a blatant endorsement of non-fact from what is supposed to be the trier of fact, not the public policy Fairy Godmother with natty robes and a wooden hammer. The justice achieved here, such as it is, doesn’t obviate the damage to the integrity of the courts.

  10. If you look at the original article, it says he had the DNA testing done when the mother ASKED FOR MORE MONEY AND LESS VISITATION TIME…

    I would suggest that there’s a possibility that he’s objecting, not to the actual child support, but to the fact that he has to turn the money over to HER to (allegedly) spend on the children.

    I knew a couple several years ago who claimed that any time the father (“he” of the couple) had a visitation with his kids, they spent a pile on clothes and food, because Mom was spending the child support on her new boyfriend and their drugs…

  11. Any man who has been the father, presumably loving for a child for more than 14 years, should have become bonded enough with that child that the ultimate biological parentage is irrelevant. Either this guy was a lousy parent and/or his distaste for the mother is such that he does not mind subjecting the children to the pain and suffering that this would cause. If this was discovered after birth, or in infancy, than I might have some shred of sympathy for his position. At this late date though his motive is too strike out despite the harm it might cause. I’m with the court.

  12. Hmm, I seem to recall a similar case in contracts class. Man acted as father for child that was not his, then decided he didn’t want to be part of child’s life. Court ruled that he had to pay support. This was a US case. Wish I could remember the legal basis for the decision.

    Would be interesting procedurally to be sure. I think the non-father defendant could become a third party plaintiff and implead the biological father (if he were known). Then the bio father could counterclaim against mother. Fun!

  13. “being an actual parent to have to pay child support”

    This man was an actual parent, for 14 years. There are two issues involved in this and many other divorce cases. 1. there are actually two relationships to deal with, partner/partner and parent/child. The fact that she lied (which is what it looks like to me, unless she has multiple personalities or was on some very heavy medications) is an issue between the two of them. Her lie does not erase the relationship he has with his children.

    2. Given the many permutations of genetic/gestational/adoptive parenting that occur thanks to medical intervention in fertility a judge must consdier the reality of lived conditions between parent and child as well as genetics in order to come to a fair decision.

    Morally, I have never understood parents who did not want to financially support their children. Hate your former partner all you want, but that needs to be kept separate from how you treat your child. An adult should want the best for children and should voluntarily pay for their welfare to the best of their ability. This man is being hateful to these children when he should be embracing them and helping them both emotionally and financially.

  14. That was my brain off coffee.

    Should read, “(H)eld involuntarily to the financial responsibility of another man’s actions . . .”

    This is my brain on coffee. Any questions?

    (You’ll notice it looks nothing like an egg.)

  15. What about another side to this coin? What if the never notified biological father of these children were somehow identified now and wanted to establish a relationship with these children? Isn’t there never a time when it is too late? Surely the parent-child relationship is paramount, but if it was created under false pretenses in the first place and was maintained by a long-standing fraud, shouldn’t that give one pause to reconsider the fairness of the child support obligation? Would the biological father’s possible obligation to start paying child support somehow act as a condition precedent to his getting to know the children? Could he really be required to start paying child support now or would the existing support obligation have to be canceled first? Once the actual biological father is identified, could the respondent in this matter sue the actual father to recover all the child support heretofore paid? Perhaps for the good of the children the support should continue, but couldn’t the court compel the petitioner-mother to reimburse the respondent for all of the unjust support payments he made to her without imperiling the relationship between “father” and children? The obvious bottom line is that justice was not achieved, and the rule of law is a joke as to all parties. Are the children to be deluded for the rest of their lives as to their real identity? Is the petitioner-mother to be allowed to continue to perpetrate her fraud forever? Can the judge and the system of justice allow the petitioner-mother to orchestrate such a fraud based on a baseless and incredible allegation that she does not remember having an affair? Does the respondent have any hope of justice ever? Perhaps justice in Canada is on the way out just as the rule of law in the USA was gutted for the past 8 years. Pity the Canadians; they know not what awaits them.

  16. I disagree, raff. The parental relationship was forged under false pretenses. I understand the urge to “protect” children, but consider their age and look at it this way. Which is a more valuable lesson to teach? The value of family or the value of justice? You can retain the value of family in this case if the nominative father stays involved in their lives as a guiding force but you cannot maintain justice by making an innocent man pay for another man’s children. Justice and equity require that the biological father be held accountable first and foremost. I don’t think anyone would disagree with that being fair. The kids are old enough to get over the family disintegration. Trust me, I’ve seen it. But in the face of scientific fact, you cannot say that this is positive for justice which should be (and all to often isn’t) rooted in empirical and verifiable fact above all else. This is no different than people saying “Bush can’t be a criminal, he’s President” when the facts show that the opposite is true. It’s wishful thinking. When you sacrifice reality for policy, you are lying to yourself and the world. One can heal from a harsh truth. Lies are trickier. They mutate in the wild like a virus and can have unpredictable effects later. The lie here is that this man is their father in fact when he’s established by science that he isn’t although he’s still being treated as such by the government. That’s saying he’s innocent but being punished anyway. By definition that’s injustice. So is it just that he be held to the involuntarily financial responsibility of another man actions even though he has an emotional connection with the children? I don’t think so.

  17. This is just wrong. Canadian law is all about breaking up families, and making the man pay for everything. This judge seems to be in favour of promoting infidelity and passing judgements to prove that there are no consequences. The next judgement she will pass is probably a man having to pay child support for his neighbours children just because he has been nice to them, and they do not have a father to pay child support. This has to end. Why doesnt the judge pay the childsupport if she is worried about the children ? Let the government pay to avoid any gap in the childrens funding. Judges should stop playing these games and abusing their power. We do not want to have a Taliban law here.

  18. This man had a long time father/child relationship and to pull that emotional and financial support from them could do great harm to them. As long as it is proven that that it is in the best interests of the children, I understand the ruling. Along with the support payments comes visitation rights to enable the “parent” to continue his relationship with the children.

  19. No DNA match would equal the last dime I paid ever no matter the court ruling. The science is just that good and this judgment just that wrong.

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