When most Arizona parents find themselves before a court of law to discuss financial support, the matter is fairly straightforward. The custodial parent is usually seeking child support payments from the non-custodial parent, to assist with the costs of raising a shared child. There are certainly variations to these matters, such as when a parent seeks the help of the court in forcing compliance with an existing child support order or when one parent is asking for a modification in the amount of the payments.
One recent case showed a remarkable deviation from that norm. A man was brought before the court to determine what the correct amount of child support might be for his twin daughters. After DNA testing was conducted, however, it was determined that he was the father of just one of those children. He had no biological connection to the second twin. The case was the first of its kind within the state of the man's residence and one of only a few in the nation.
The phenomenon of a woman giving birth to twins who have different fathers is known as "superfecundation." It is possible due to the time frame in which reproductive materials are viable. A woman's egg can only be fertilized between 12 to 48 hours, while a man's sperm is viable for between seven to 10 days. Because of that overlap, it is possible for twins to be fathered by two separate men during the mother's period of ovulation.
In this case, the man was only held responsible for child support payments for one of the two infant girls. There is no word on whether the identity of the second father is known, or if he will be pursued for child support payments. For Arizona residents, the case serves as an illustration of the importance of securing DNA testing any time that paternity could be called into question.
Source: wjla.com, "N.J. dad ordered to pay child support for 1 twin after DNA test reveals 2 fathers", May 9, 2015