Supreme Court of Canada Case to Get fathers On Birth Registrations

Dad's case now a feminist cause celebre

He won a court fight to have his name on his sons' birth certificates but some say the ruling was flawed

Vancouver Sun, by Ian Mulgrew, November 14, 2003

Darrell Trociuk sat like a coiled spring as he was described by a University of Victoria law professor as "more than a casual fornicator" and "less than a social parent."

In June, the 38-year-old Delta dad won a seven-year-long fight at the Supreme Court of Canada to have his name included on the birth certificates for his triplet sons.

He's still waiting for the change and he's angry that his case has since become a feminist cause celebre in which he is often falsely portrayed.

On Thursday, he confronted professor Hester Lessard after she had given a thoughtful 45-minute presentation at the University of B.C. -- part of a regular lunch-time lecture series at the law school -- on why she believed the unanimous verdict of the Supreme Court in his case was wrong.

She came to talk about family ideologies and the construction of parenthood in a world where science says potentially five adults can be involved in a birth -- the two social parents (the couple who rear the child), a sperm donor, an egg donor and a birth mother.

He came to complain that he was being turned into fodder by the gender war.

Some scholars and lawyers, for instance, have suggested that in today's world of gay and lesbian families, the high-court ruling in Trociuk is as flawed as the original statute.

A writer and teacher of feminist theory, constitutional law and equality rights, Lessard is particularly critical of the decision.

Lessard believes Justice Marie Deschamps, writing her first ruling, erred in her analysis and in the manner in which she framed the issues.

She believes the decision is a disheartening endorsement of "biological" concepts of parenthood, "an increasingly fictional creation narrative."

"It legitimates a heterosexual view of the family," she said.

Trociuk won because the Supreme Court ruled B.C.'s Vital Statistics Act violated Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms by discriminating against "fathers."

A section of the act provides mothers with sole discretion to include or exclude information relating to fathers when registering the birth of a child. A father who is not named on a birth certificate has no say in the surname of his child.

(Trociuk, however, can't seek name changes for sons Ryan, Andrew and Daniel, born on Jan. 29, 1996, until the province rewrites the act and the government was given a year to fix it.)

Trociuk was not married to Reni Ernst, 44, who maintains that, as soon as the boys are old enough, she will allow them to choose their names.

The triplets were putatively conceived in a last-ditch attempt to mend the tumultuous relationship. When the inevitable split came, it was bitter. It remains caustic.

Trociuk began the fight to be acknowledged as the father of the boys within six months of their birth.

He has visitation rights and pays some child support for his sons, who live in Nanaimo.

He lost the first round to be recognized in B.C. Supreme Court and lost again at the B.C. Court of Appeal.

This summer, though, Justice Deschamps disagreed with the lower courts and said Trociuk was right. It was a no-brainer in her view: Mothers and fathers should be equal.

But in 2003, as Lessard pointed out, who constitutes the "mother" and the "father"?

"This is the crucial mis-step," she said. "The debate should not be framed by who is a 'mother' and who is a 'father.'"

The high court's reasoning was flawed, Lessard said, and the justices should have been Read More .. top of their game.

Before they ruled the Vital Statistics Act should be fixed, she said, a B.C. Human Rights Tribunal had ordered it amended to accommodate gays and lesbians. The high court should have spent time mulling the same concerns.

In essence, what I heard her say is the law today should be gender-neutral and as reflective of real life as we can make it. The Trociuk decision is bad law because it perpetuates as many stereotypes as it purports to correct. And I think she's right.

What about a dozen aggrieved fathers in the audience heard, unfortunately, was that they were going to have to wait again while gay and lesbian parents were accommodated. And a few of them got rude about it.

"I can't believe this crap," snapped one particular boor who dubbed the law school a "lesbian breeding ground."

Listening to the theoretical ramifications of his case, Trociuk didn't like what he heard either.

He has his own version of the story and it isn't about stereotypes or about the interplay of private and public authority in the family unit. It's about romance gone wrong and a father who doesn't get enough time with his kids.

"You are wrong," he told Lessard. "I was all for a hyphenated name. She has played a charade the whole way."

The professor was talking about public policy and he was talking about pain.

"I love my kids," he said. "I could be run over by a bus today and there would be no recognition."

Lessard had no response and moved on to another question.

But what could she say?

Trociuk won in the Supreme Court of Canada and it hasn't helped.

Copyright 2003 Vancouver Sun

Paternity Fraud
UK National Survey

Paternity fraud survey statistics

Scotland's National Newspaper

96% of women are liars, honest

5,000 women polled

Half the women said that if they became pregnant by another man but wanted to stay with their partner, they would lie about the baby's real father.

Forty-two per cent would lie about contraception in order to get pregnant, no matter the wishes of their partner.

Globe and Mail - Paternity Fraud statistics for Canada

Canada's largest
national newspaper

Mommy's little secret

The article contains info about children's identity fraud at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

December 14, 2002.

Includes interview with employees of Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario, Canada who admit they deny children's identity information to husbands/male partners of mothers who want to hide the real identity of their child because they had an affair. The U.N. Convention on the Rights of The Child specifically supports a child's human right to have a relationship with both his/her biological parents. In addition, this article is proof that The Hospital for Sick Children ("Sick Kids") supports paternity fraud.

Further "Sick Kids" supports a mother's rights only, which they view, supersedes 3 other people's rights, namely, the rights of the biological father, the rights of the mother's male partner/husband and the child's identity rights.

BBC News logo

One in 25 fathers 'not the daddy'

Up to one in 25 dads could unknowingly be raising another man's child, UK health researchers estimate.

Increasing use of genetic testing for medical and legal reasons means Read More ..uples are discovering the biological proof of who fathered the child.

The Liverpool John Moores University team reached its estimate based on research findings published between 1950 and 2004.

The study appears in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Biological father
Professor Mark Bellis and his team said that the implications of so-called paternal discrepancy were huge and largely ignored, even though the incidence was increasing.

In the US, the number of paternity tests increased from 142,000 in 1991 to 310,490 in 2001.

Paternity Fraud - Spain Supreme Court - Civil Damages

Daily Mail UK

Adulterous woman ordered to pay husband £177,000 in 'moral damages'

The Daily Mail, UK
18th February 2009

An adulterous Spanish woman who conceived three children with her lover has been ordered to pay £177,000 in 'moral damages' to her husband.

The cuckolded man had believed that the three children were his until a DNA test eventually proved they were fathered by another man.

The husband, who along with the other man cannot be named for legal reasons to protect the children's identities, suspected his second wife may have been unfaithful in 2001.

Sydney Morning Herald

Biology, not heart, provokes women's infidelity

Sydney Morning Herald, Australia
January 15, 2009

BEAUTIFUL women who have affairs can now blame it on their sex hormones.

Women with higher levels of oestradiol, a form of oestrogen, not only look and feel more attractive, they are also more likely to cheat on their partners, a new study has found.

One-night-stands are not what interest these flirtatious females, who tend to have bigger breasts, relatively small waists and symmetrical faces as a result of their high levels of oestradiol.

Rather, they adopt a strategy of serial monogamy, say the researchers, led by Kristina Durante of the University of Texas.

Paternity Fraud & the Criminal Code of Canada

Paternity fraud: Is it or should it be a criminal offence under the Criminal Code of Canada?

You be the judge.

Independent Women's Forum

Who Knows Father Best?

Feminist organizations including the National Organization of Women (NOW) has objected to legislation that requires the courts to vacate paternity judgments against men who arent, in fact, the father.

Think about that. NOW wants some man, any man, to make child support payments. The woman who doesnt even know who the father is, should not be held responsible for her actions, is a sweet, loving, blameless mother who seeks only to care for her child and if naming some schmuck as father who never saw her before in his life helps her provide for the innocent babe, well then, that's fine.

Innocence is no excuse. Pay up.   Read More ..

Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Broadcast: November 22, 2004

Who's Your Daddy?

Last year, more than 3,000 DNA paternity tests were commissioned by Australian men, and in almost a quarter of those cases, the test revealed that not only had their partners been unfaithful, but the children they thought were theirs had been sired by someone else. Read More ..

Paternity Fraud

Sunday Times

DNA: Why the truth can hurt

The Sunday Times
March 27, 2005

IT sounded too good to be true and it was.

The fairytale that saw Federal Health Minister Tony Abbott reunited with the son he thought he had given up for adoption 27 years ago, ABC sound-recordist Daniel O'Connor, ended this week when DNA tests confirmed another man had fathered Mr O'Connor.

The revelations were devastating for all involved, not least Mr O'Connor.

Still reeling from the emotional reunion with his mother, Kathy Donnelly, and Mr Abbott a few months ago, a simple test of truth has thrown the trio into disarray a situation familiar to thousands of other Australians.

Paternity testing in Australia is a burgeoning industry.

The simplicity of the test cells are collected from a mouth swab grossly underestimates the seriousness of the situation.

Paternity Fraud Australia

Fathers May Get Money Back in Paternity Fraud Cases

18 March, 2005
FindLaw, Australia

Proposed new laws will make it easier for fathers to recover child maintenance payments if DNA testing reveals that they are not the child's father.

The Family Law Amendment Bill 2005 allows people who wrongly believed they were the parent of a child to recover any child maintenance paid or property transferred under an order of a court under the Family Law Act 1975 .

"The bill is intended to make it easier for people who find themselves in this position to take recovery action without the need to initiate separate proceedings for an order from a court of civil jurisdiction, such as a State, Local or Magistrates court," Attorney-General Philip Ruddock said.

USA Today

Men wage battle on 'paternity fraud'

USA TODAY, by Martin Kasindorf, December 12, 2002

An acid sense of betrayal has been gnawing at Damon Adams since a DNA test showed that he is not the father of a 10-year-old girl born during his former marriage.

"Something changes in your heart," says Adams, 51, a dentist in Traverse City, Mich. "When she walks through the door, you're seeing the product of an affair."

But Michigan courts have spurned the DNA results Adams offered in his motions to stop paying $23,000 a year in child support. Now, Adams is lobbying the state Legislature for relief and joining other men in a national movement against what they call "paternity fraud." Read More ..