Does a father who is unwed but on the birth certificate with no court documents still pay child support?

An unmarried father becomes legally obligated when a child support order is issued by the family court. If there is no court order any payments are voluntary. However, they should be made by check and the father should retain proof of the payments. Once the mother files a paternity suit and requests child support, the court can go back in time with a child support order. It may help if the father can prove he was paying prior to the child support order.

Typically, the mother or the local social/child services agency on her behalf (if the mother is receiving any public assistance) will go to court and get a judgment against the father to establish paternity and obtain a child support order. Being on the birth certificate may not be enough, though, if he decides to contest the order. He could request an order to establish paternity by DNA testing.

You should consult with an attorney or an advocate at the family court.