How far back can someone sue for child support?

Asked almost 2 years ago - Centereach, NY

my brother slept with a girl 16 years ago, 5 years after that she tells him the child could be his but wants nothing to do with him. 4 years ago she shows back up in his life and they have been dating on and off. this past year he wanted to end their relationship and she threatened to take him to court for paternity and all the back child support. he doesnt know if the child is his but the child is 16 and she has never wanted support before. she was not on public assistance at all during this time. can she make him pay that much back child support when she never made the move for it? if she can what are the odds she will get it?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. David Alexander Browde

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . You can only get child support in New York from the date a petition is filed going forward - not backward.

    Under the rules governing the conduct of attorneys in New York it may be necessary to remind you that this answer... more
  2. Louis Lawrence Sternberg

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

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    Answered . Child support is retroactive only to the date that the petitioner files his or her application. That means that, in this case, the mother will not be awarded support for the past 16 years.

    Let her continue to threaten to petition for child support. The more time she spends threatening (without actually filing) will be less time that your brother is actually liable for support.

    It is always advisable to contact an attorney. For a consultation, please contact my office at 516-669-3295. We... more
  3. Virginia Giselle Alvarez

    Contributor Level 16

    Answered . In terms of the paternity petition the court will look to see who if anyone the child already considers to be dad and whether your brother has provided any support for this child. Your brother should just wait to see if and when she files a petition. She only will have 5 years more tops to claim it. If she isn't on assistance the. She is the only one of the two likely to file.
    Good luck

    The above answer does not constitute an attorney client relationship and/ or retention of counsel. This answer is... more

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