Status of Children Act 1987

Presumptions of paternity and non-paternity.

46

46. (1) Where a woman gives birth to a child—

( a) during a subsisting marriage to which she is a party, or

( b) within the period of ten months after the termination, by death or otherwise, of a marriage to which she is a party,

then the husband of the marriage shall be presumed to be the father of the child unless the contrary is proved on the balance of probabilities.

F19 [ (2) Notwithstanding subsection (1) of this section, where a married woman, being a woman who is living apart from her husband, gives birth to a child more than ten months after the date of her separation from her husband, then her husband shall be presumed not to be the father of the child unless the contrary is proved on the balance of probabilities. ]

F20 [ (2A) For the purposes of subsection (2) of this section, the date of the separation of a married woman from her husband shall be deemed to be

(a) the date on which a decree of divorce a mensa et thoro was granted in relation to them,

(b) the date on which a decree of judicial separation was granted in relation to them,

(c) the date on which a deed of separation was executed in relation to them,

(d) the date on which a separation agreement was entered into by them, or

(e) such other date as may be established by the woman. ]

(3) Notwithstanding subsection (1) of this section, where—

F19 [ (a) the birth of a child is registered in a register maintained under the Civil Registration Act 2004 , and ]

( b) the name of a person is entered as the father of the child on the register so maintained,

then the person whose name is so entered shall be presumed to be the father of the child unless the contrary is proved on the balance of probabilities.

(4) For the purposes of subsection (1) of this section “ subsisting marriage” shall be construed as including a voidable marriage and the expression “ the termination, by death or otherwise, of a marriage” shall be construed as including the annulment of a voidable marriage.

F20 [ (5) In this section, decree of judicial separation means a decree under section 3 of the Judicial Separation and Family Law Reform Act 1989 . ]

Annotations

Amendments:

F19

Substituted (18.01.2016) by Children and Family Relationships Act 2015 (9/2015), s. 88(a) and (c), S.I. No. 12 of 2016.

F20

Inserted (18.01.2016) by Children and Family Relationships Act 2015 (9/2015), s. 88(b) and (d), S.I. No. 12 of 2016.