NASHVILLE — Men can stop making child support payments after learning through genetic testing the child was actually fathered by someone else under legislation approved this morning by the House.
House Bill 805, sponsored by Rep. Stacey Campfield, R-Knoxville, passed on a 66-24 vote. Three lawmakers abstained.
Rep. Campfield, who has dubbed the measure the “baby daddy bill,” said the issue is fairness. It would not apply in cases where the man has legally adopted the child. Another provision says support payments must continue for 60 days after childhood is “disestablished.”
Rep. Mark Maddox, D-Dresden, questioned the impact.
“What about the child?” he asked. “Suddenly this woman — yes, she did wrong — is going to be left to fend for herself and that child. Maybe the real father can be found. Maybe not.”
The Senate version of the bill is sponsored by Sen. Dewayne Bunch, R-Cleveland, and remains in the Judiciary Committee.
Andy Sher is a Nashville-based staff writer covering Tennessee state government and politics for the Times Free Press. A Washington correspondent from 1999-2005 for the Times Free Press, Andy previously headed up state Capitol coverage for The Chattanooga Times, worked as a state Capitol reporter for The Nashville Banner and was a contributor to The Tennessee Journal, among other publications. Andy worked for 17 years at The Chattanooga Times covering police, health care, county government, ...