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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Costly One Night Stand

Ken Rodgers had an alcohol fuelled one night stand in 1993 with a girl he hardly knew. When he was later named as the father, despite never seeing the mother again, he did the right thing and provided financial support to the boy of up to $200 a week through the Child Support Agency. In ten years, he had paid out $71000.

Mr Rogers, a 38 year old aircraft mechanical engineer said "I was no scumbag. I grew up in a decent family and we took these things seriously."

Despite his regular payments, he became frustrated with the mother's attitude to him meeting his son, always having an excuse and constantly moving around the country, she wouldn't even give him a photograph of the boy.

So in 2006 he got a stay order on his payments which infuriated the mother and after many threats and protests, he asked for a DNA test. Needless to say, he was not the father.

In 2007, in a hearing in the Federal Magistrate's Court, he obtained an order for $60,000 to be repaid under Section 143 of the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 but he learned that the mother was a Centrelink client and is only required to pay $12.70 a fortnight. "I estimate that at this rate it will take me 233 years to get it all back, he said.

Now married with a family of his own, he is very bitter that he could never afford to buy his own home and now it's too late.