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Constitutional Law Keyed to Maggs
Michael H. v. Gerald D.
Citation:491 U.S. 110 (1989)
Under California law, a child born to a married woman living with her husband is presumed to be a child of the marriage. The presumption of legitimacy may be rebutted only by the husband or wife, and then only in limited circumstances. The California statute that is the subject of this litigation is more than a century old. It provided that the issue of a wife cohabiting with her husband, who is not impotent, is indisputably presumed to be legitimate. In 1980, the legislature amended the statute to provide the husband an opportunity to introduce blood-test evidence in rebuttal of the presumption. In 1981, it amended it to provide the mother such an opportunity.
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