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A Brief Summary in Plain Language of the Most Important Laws Concerning Women; Together with a Few Observations Thereon . Bodichon, Barbara Leigh Smith, 1827–1891.
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page: 11

LAWS CONCERNING ILLEGITIMATE CHILDREN AND THEIR MOTHERS.


Maintenance.

A single woman having a child may throw the maintenance upon the putative father, so called to distinguish him from a husband, until the age of thirteen.

The law only enforces the parents to maintain such child, and the sum the father is obliged to pay, after an order of affiliation is proved against him, never exceeds two shillings and sixpence a week.

The mother, as long as she is unmarried or a widow, is bound to maintain such child as a part of her family until such child attain the age of sixteen.

A man marrying a woman having a child or children at the time of such marriage is bound to support them, whether legitimate or not, until the age of sixteen.

Disabilities of a natural child.

The rights of an illegitimate child are only such as he can acquire; he can inherit nothing, being in the law looked page: 12 upon as nobody’s son, but he may acquire property by devise or bequest. He may acquire a surname by reputation, but does not inherit one.

The only incapacity under which he labours is that he cannot be heir‐at‐law nor next of kin to any person, nor can he have collateral heirs, but only lineal descendants; if he acquire property and die without a will, such property will go to the crown unless he have lineal descendants.

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