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Can a man other than husband challenge paternity?

Portland, OR |

We had our child out of wedlock because she came early (2 weeks before our wedding), dad signed voluntary acknowledgement day of birth, and we married on our original wedding date. Fast forward a few months, a guy I strongly befriended last year swears he is dad. If there is a possibility it would have been from him waiting until I was intoxicated to take a shot. That chance petrifies me. My question is can he file a petition even though law says he can't? It says if the parents marry after the birth and have signed VOP and are married and cohabiting then no one may challenge. Are there loopholes to this rule?

To be clear, We signed the VOP then got married, he did not sign the VOP after we were married.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. A valid acknowledgment of paternity is equivalent to an adjudication of paternity of a child and confers upon the acknowledged father all of the rights and duties of a parent. An interested third party may bring an action to declare the existence or nonexistence of the father and child relationship. In Oregon, a filiation suit constitutes a collateral attack on an earlier finding of paternity if the suit alleges that someone other than the legal father is the child’s biological father. Consult with a competent Oregon attorney.

    This is not a legal advice or solicitation, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Consult with an attorney. I work for Cardinal Risk Mangement and Cardinal Intellectual Property, IP service companies, but not law firms. I also am the president of Vepachedu Educational Foundation Inc., which is a non profit educational foundation. I also write cultural and scientific compliations for the foundation. I also teach at Northwestern university as a guest lecturer. I also provide some pro-bono guidance on immigration and other issues through Indian American Bar Association. I also have a contract with Cardinal Law Group, a law firm, for IP projects. All this information is on my profile at Avvo and also at Linkedin. Any views/opinions expressed in any context are my personal views in individual capacity only, and do not represent the views and opinions of any firm, client, or anyone else, and is not sponsored or endorsed by them in any way.


  2. Time for you and your husband to consult with a paternity law attorney. I suggest Larry Gorin, whose office is in Beaverton. Good luck.

    Be sure to designate "best answer." If you live in Oregon, you may call me for more detailed advice, 503-650-9662. Please be aware that each answer on this website is based upon the facts, or lack thereof, provided in the question. To be sure you get complete and comprehensive answers, based upon the totality of your situation, contact a local attorney who specializes in the area of law that involves your legal problem. Diane L. Gruber has been practicing law in Oregon for 26 years, specializing in family law, bankruptcy, estate planning and probate. Note: Diane L. Gruber does not represent you until a written fee agreement has been signed by you and Diane L. Gruber, and the fee listed in the agreement has been paid.


  3. If this "guy you strongly befriended" really is the father, he still has a chance to argue that in court. The fact that your husband signed an acknowledgement isn't an absolute bar to the real father (or someone claiming to be the real father) going to court.

    Wouldn't that be awful? If true fathers could always be frozen out of court forever as long as some other guy marries the woman and signs an acknowledgement of paternity?

    Portland Defender
    1001 Southwest 5th Avenue #1100
    Portland, OR 97204
    (503) 592-0606

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