WA Legal Roundup: Division II
GC (mother) had SEC while married to TD (presumed father) but VH (guy on the side) claims to be the biological father. VH filed a parentage petition because TD is presumed to be father (since child was born while he was married to mother). Trial court ordered DNA testing to determine the correct father. TD objected to the DNA testing arguing that he did not have to submit to DNA testing until a hearing determined that it was in the best interest of the child. Trial court ordered DNA testing again and TD appealed.
The appeals court agreed with TD and reversed and remanded to the trial court ordering a hearing to determine whether DNA testing is in the best interest of the child. The court quoted RCW 26.26.116(1)(a) wherein paternity is presumed if a child is born during a marriage. Moreover the court articulated previous decisions, which found that some circumstances do not justify DNA testing where the family stability will be disrupted.
Reversed and Remanded