He’s Not The Dad, But He Still Owes Child Support

He’s Not The Dad, But He Still Owes Child Support


Joe Vandusen had long ago moved on from his estranged wife, whom he split with but never divorced 16 years ago. Then he received a letter from the Iowa Department of Human Resources in February: “I opened it up and it was child support, for a kid that is not even mine,” he tells WQAD.  Vandusen, who lives in Davenport, says he can’t be the father of his wife’s 1-year-old child because he hasn’t had any contact with her since they broke up. An official told him that doesn’t matter.

Under Iowa law, Vandusen is legally responsible for any child born during the marriage, even if he isn’t the biological father. “It shows Iowa needs to change their laws,” he says. Vandusen, who cares for two biological children as well as two others with his girlfriend of five years, adds that he might take the case to court.


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