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NCFM Attorney Marc Angeluccs Announces the California Court Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Horrendously Unjust Paternity Case Appeal for Homeless Man Hari Wilburn

July 30, 2010


California Courts Uphold Order Making Homeless Man Pay Child Support and Lose Inheritance

For Immediate Release

Press ReleaseLOS ANGELES/EWORLDWIRE/July 30, 2010 — National Coalition For Men (NCFM) attorney Marc E. Angelucci reports that on July 28, 2010, the California Supreme Court declined to review a Court of Appeal decision that forced Hari Wilburn, a homeless man, to pay tens of thousands of dollars in child support for a child even though DNA excludes him as the dad and he never acted as the dad.

On August 17, the probate court in San Diego will hear the mother’s request to intercept Wilburn’s inheritance from his deceased mother in order to pay the child support order.

Wilburn was represented at the appellate level by Angelucci. NCFM is a nonprofit organization that addresses how sex discrimination affects men and boys and that helped change California law in 2005 to help protect men from false paternity claims.

In 1991, Cathy Tate named Wilburn as the father of her five-year-old child Alexis in a restraining order proceeding. Wilburn, who was homeless, was never personally served, and there is no record of any service except by mail to Wilburn’s mother’s address, which is not legally proper. Nonetheless, the court found Wilburn was served, issued a restraining order and ordered Wilburn to pay child support. Wilburn was not present.

Seventeen years later, in 2008, Tate asked the probate court to intercept tens of thousands of dollars Wilburn was about to inherit from his deceased mother, based on the 1991 support order. Wilburn’s family tracked down 22-year-old Alexis and asked her to take a DNA test, which excluded Wilburn as Alexis’ biological dad. Wilburn’s family hired an attorney, who filed a motion challenging the support order. Alexis swore under oath that Wilburn never acted as her dad and she only saw him a few times in her life. The court denied the motion, ruling Wilburn should have challenged the order sooner, despite the fact that he was homeless and living under a bridge. On appeal, the Third District Court of Appeal upheld the order on the same grounds, and the California Supreme Court has now declined review.

“This is totally unjust,” said Angelucci. “It is wrong to force a man person to pay child support for a child that is not his, especially when he never acted as the dad.”

According to the American Association of Blood Banks, 30 percent of DNA paternity tests nationwide turn out negative. “That figure is out of about 300,000 tests per year,” said Angelucci. “At least 100,000 tests are negative per year in the U.S., and that’s only men who get tested. This is a serious, under-addressed problem.”

The Wilburn v. Tate appellate decision is at;=CA&d;=43649

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