There are many reasons a mother may take legal measures to seek support and/or custody rulings for her child. Many times she and the child's biological father are separated, divorced, or were never married, and it is up to the court to decide what role the man should play in the child's life. Sometimes, such as when the child is born out of wedlock, it can be in the best interest of both parents to settle issues like custody arrangements early on to ensure that the child's needs are fully met and that each parent understands their responsibilities. In some instances though, years may pass before a parent insists on the establishment of paternity. And while it may come as a surprise to learn that a man can be identified as a father long after his child was born, the time laps may have little to no affect on lessening his parental obligations.
Chicago Bulls icon Michael Jordan is identified in a paternity lawsuit for a 16-year-old boy. The boy's mother allegedly gave birth to Jordan's son in 1996, and the child himself says the retired basketball legend as his father. In fact, the two have even apparently met in the past.
The boy's mother filed the suit at least in part to have her son acknowledged as a Jordan. She is also requesting that the sports hero pay medical bills and child support for the boy, if he is indeed the father.
If paternity test results prove that Jordan is the father, he may be responsible for paying past and current child support, along with other expenses. Furthermore, he may seek to develop a relationship with the child.
Source: Chicago Sun Times, "Woman sues Michael Jordan, says he's father of 16-year-old son," Dan Rozek, March 1, 2013