Father fights against compulsory child visits
21 November 2007, Karlsruhe - A German married man who wants to put adultery behind him protested to Germany's highest judges Wednesday after his ex-mistress won a court order forcing him to visit their illegitimate son, 8.
21 November 2007
Karlsruhe - A German married man who wants to put adultery behind him protested to Germany's highest judges Wednesday after his ex-mistress won a court order forcing him to visit their illegitimate son, 8.
The man, who has accepted paternity and is paying maintenance, says he has vowed not to talk to his old flame any more, so seeing the child is taboo.
Child-welfare groups and the federal government are backing the ex-mistress in a case heard Wednesday before the German Constitutional Court in the south-western justice capital of Karlsruhe.
Since the legal dispute began the boy has been put in an orphanage.
"The mass-scale tragedy of children who grow up in this country without seeing their fathers is an invisible disaster," said Ulrich Mueller, chairman of a group that promotes paternity.
A state court in Brandenburg ruled in 2004 that the child had a claim under a new law to occasionally see his biological father and threatened to fine the man up to 25,000 euros (36,750 dollars) if he did not visit the boy.
The father told the judges he was determined to preserve his marriage and suspected that his ex-mistress had sought the visits in the secret hope of luring him away from his wife.
The constitutional court usually takes several weeks to issue verdicts.
Subject: German news