March 2021 | No. 2019-CA-01695-COA (Miss App. 2021)

Greer v. Greer (Mississippi 2021)

A parent who fails to pursue a paternity challenge will not be provided with post-trial relief. The mother became pregnant while separated from the father. The parents reconciled and the baby was given the father’s last name. When the parents filed for divorce, the father requested genetic testing for the younger child. His request was granted, and he was ordered to schedule and pay for the testing, which he failed to do. He also didn’t appear at the divorce hearing. In the final decree, he was ordered to pay support for the parties two children. The father appealed arguing the court should have determined paternity for the younger child before granting the divorce. Without the proper paternity determination, the divorce decree was not a final order. The court of appeals affirmed the decree. The marital presumption is rebuttable. The father waived his right by failing to schedule, pay for, or submit to the genetic testing that he had requested. Paternity was properly determined by the marital presumption, so the divorce decree was a final order.

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