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My son will soon be 17 and we live in Georgia. My sons bio dad is not on the birth certificate, & has never been legitimized.

Tifton, GA |

Father has been to prison and is currently back in jail. Never received even a penny in child support. I'm thinking that child support for the
Last 17 years could be very beneficial for college. Any hope of that happening or should I just not even entertain that thought?

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Attorney answers 3


As an attorney, I only do adoptions, so this is not really my area, ... but your question is really more practical than legal: Suppose you ALREADY HAD a judgment against this guy for all that back child support. If he's paid NOTHING for 17 years, and is now in jail, how likely is it you're going to get all that money? Or even much of ANY of it? Not very. Also, a judge evaluating an action seeking it MIGHT (not bound to, but MIGHT) find it curious that you waited 17 years before hauling the guy into court to seek child support. It depends on all the circumstances, of course (like, if he's independently wealthy?!), but it would probably be throwing good money after bad.

God Bless!



My thoughts exactly! Just wanted to hear it from a professional. Thanks!

Birney O'Brian Bull

Birney O'Brian Bull


(And as you see from the other answers, I don't even know what I'm talking about! If you can't get child support retroactively, then forget it!)


Child support is not set retroactively. Assuming you did what a prudent mother would have done and filed for child support right after he was born, and you never received what was awarded, THAT you can try to collect. If you waited until now, you cannot rectify that huge mistake, and can only seek child support for a brief future time.

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Georgia does not award back child support where there was no court order, so you could file now if you wanted to, but it would only be in effect until your son turned 18. Hard to imagine it would be worth the time and emotional distress.

Good luck,
Christie Ayotte

I am not your attorney and we do not have an attorney-client relationship. This answer is based only on the information you provided; new facts not shared here could change the answer. Relying solely on the internet for legal information, while convenient, can have disastrous consequences.

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