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Melissa A. Featherston

Child custody litigation filed by father of Fantasia's son

Missouri fans of "American Idol" may remember the winner of the third season, Fantasia Barrino, who is now an R&B singer.  She has a daughter who is now 13 years old.  Recently, the girl's biological father filed child custody litigation.

Barrino and her daughter's father were a couple in high school.  He was reportedly abusive toward the singer and even pleaded guilty to domestic violence charges.  Now, he is asking the court for sole legal and physical custody of Barrino's daughter.  He claims that he could raise their child better than Barrino. 

Barrino says that, up to this point, her former boyfriend has not been a part of the child's life.  Further, she claims that she never received any child support from him either.  She also says that he is now doing well for himself and is financially able to pay child support.  Therefore, since he filed his claim for sole custody, she is now going to request he begin making child support payments and that he pay her all of the back payments she claims he never made.

Since it appears that the couple was never married, the first order of business in this child custody litigation may be for the court to make a determination of paternity -- if that has not already been established legally.  As would be the case here in Missouri, once it is established that Barrino's former boyfriend is the legal father of her daughter, the court will focus on what is in the best interest of Barrino's daughter.  Once that determination is made, the issue of child support will most likely be decided as well. 

Source: newsone.com, "Fantasia Gets Sued For Custody By Daughter's Father", Ruth Manuel-Logan, Oct. 6, 2014

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