How is this even possible?

Imagine the surprise. You receive a letter in the mail from the State of Iowa stating you owe child support for a child you didn't father. When you call the State Department to inform them there is no way you are this child's father and request a paternity test for proof, you are denied and told you are still going to pay.

According to, that is the very real scenario a Davenport man is facing. Joe Vandusen's estranged wife has been gone for nearly two decades. "We've had no contact whatsoever in 16 or 17 years, and the child just turned one year old", Vandusen said.

You can imagine the hardship this creates for him and his current blended family, of which, he is supporting two of his own biological children and two children of his 5 year relationship. On top of that, Vandusen was also recently laid off.

Current Iowa Law states the husband must pay child support if any child is born during the marriage. So it says and so it is being enforced, even in the absence of a paternity test and apparently, common sense.

This is not the first time I have heard of this happening. People, men and women both, can very unfortunately, get caught up in the loopholes despite what we 'think' our legal rights are or should be. It certainly doesn't breed trust in a situation that could easily be cleared up, without costing the State or the people involved, much money or time.

What are your thoughts on this?