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.