Code of the District of Columbia

§ 16–2342. Who may bring a complaint; time.

(a) A proceeding to determine parentage may be brought by the District of Columbia, a person whose parentage of the child is to be adjudicated, a child’s mother, putative father, guardian, legal or physical custodian, the IV-D agency, the person whose parentage is to be determined, if an adult, or a licensed child-placing agency.

(b) A proceeding to determine parentage and provide for the support of a child with no presumed parent under § 16-909(a)(1) through (4) or § 16-909(a-1)(2) may be instituted after four months of pregnancy or at anytime until the child’s twenty-first birthday.

(c) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (d) of this section, a proceeding to rebut the presumption of parentage of a child having a presumed parent under § 16-909(a)(1) through (4) or § 16-909(a-1)(2) shall be commenced not later than 2 years after the birth of the child, after which time the presumption becomes conclusive.

(d) A proceeding seeking to disprove the parent-child relationship between a child and the child’s presumed parent under § 16-909(a)(1) through (4) or § 16-909(a-1)(2) may be maintained at any time if the court determines that the presumed parent did not live with the child’s mother during the 300 days before the birth of the child and never openly held out the child as his or her own.


(Dec. 23, 1963, 77 Stat. 591, Pub. L. 88-241, § 1; July 29, 1970, 84 Stat. 544, Pub. L. 91-358, title I, § 121(a); Oct. 1, 1976, D.C. Law 1-87, § 20(b), 23 DCR 2544; Sept. 26, 1984, D.C. Law 5-123, § 2, 31 DCR 4056; Apr. 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-269, § 106(k), 48 DCR 1270; July 18, 2008, D.C. Law 18-33, § 3(h), 56 DCR 4269.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 16-2342.

1973 Ed., § 16-2342.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 16-909 and § 16-2343.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 13-269 rewrote the section heading which formerly read: “Time of bringing complaint.”, redesignated former subsec. (a) as subsec. (b); added subsec. (a); and, in subsec. (b), inserted “This section shall apply, as of August 16, 1984, to the establishment of paternity of a child for whom paternity has not been established or for whom a paternity action was brought but dismissed because a statute of limitations of less than 21 years was then in effect in the jurisdiction in which the action was brought.”

D.C. Law 18-33 rewrote the section.

Emergency Legislation

For the temporary amendment of section, see § 5(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Emergency Amendment Act of 1997 (D.C. Act 12-222, December 23, 1997, 44 DCR 114), § 5(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 1998 (D.C. Act 12-309, March 20, 1998, 45 DCR 1923), § 5(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Second Emergency Amendment Act of 1998 (D.C. Act 12-439, August 12, 1998, 45 DCR 6110), § 5(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Legislative Review Emergency Amendment Act of 1998 (D.C. Act 12-503, October 27, 1998, 45 DCR 8495), and § 5(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Second Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 1998 (D.C. Act 12-600, January 20, 1999, 46 DCR 1239).

For temporary repeal of D.C. Law 12-103, see § 13 of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Second Emergency Amendment Act of 1998 (D.C. Act 12-439, August 12, 1998, 45 DCR 6110).

For temporary repeal of D.C. Law 12-210, see § 113 of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Emergency Amendment Act of 1999 (D.C. Act 13-126, August 4, 1999, 46 DCR 6606).

For temporary (90-day) amendment of section, see § 105(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Emergency Amendment Act of 1999 (D.C. Act 13-126, August 4, 1999, 46 DCR 6606).

For temporary (90-day) amendment of section, see § 105(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Legislative Review Emergency Amendment Act of 1999 (D.C. Act 13-177, November 2, 1999, 46 DCR 9678).

For temporary (90-day) amendment of section, see § 105(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 1999 (D.C. Act 13-241, January 11, 2000, 47 DCR 581).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 105(m) of the Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Emergency Amendment Act of 2000 (D.C. Act 13-446, November 7, 2000, 47 DCR 9213).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 106(k) of Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2001 (D.C. Act 14-5, February 13, 2001, 48 DCR 2440).

Temporary Legislation

For temporary (225 day) amendment of section, see § 5(m) of Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Temporary Amendment Act of 1998 (D.C. Law 12-103, May 8, 1998, law notification 45 DCR 3254).

For temporary (225 day) amendment of section, see § 5(m) of Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Temporary Amendment Act of 1998 (D.C. Law 12-210, April 13, 1999, law notification 46 DCR 3832).

For temporary (225 day) amendment of section, see § 105(m) of Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Temporary Amendment Act of 1999 (D.C. Law 13-57, March 7, 2000, law notification 47 DCR 1979).

For temporary (225 day) amendment of section, see § 105(m) of Child Support and Welfare Reform Compliance Temporary Amendment Act of 2000 (D.C. Law 13-207, March 31, 2001, law notification 48 DCR 3238).