Expert: MJ Paternity Claim “Long Shot”

By on Tuesday, 25th October 2011

A British tabloid reported Saturday that the godfather of Michael Jackson’s three children claims to be the biological father of the late singer’s daughter, Paris.

The News of the World quotes Jackson’s longtime friend, Mark Lester, as saying he “gave Michael my sperm so that he could have kids — and I believe Paris is my daughter.”

Lester also says Paris resembles his own 15-year-old daughter, Harriet.

But does he have any claim legally?

News legal analyst Lisa Bloom said on “The Early Show” Monday it’s “a real long shot.”

“The problem for him is that, here in California, legally, a child born to a husband and wife is conclusively presumed legally to be the child of that couple,” Bloom explained. “And Michael Jackson was married to Debbie Rowe at the time those first two children were conceived. Under the law here in California, Michael Jackson is the daddy, and that’s the end of the story.”

But is that it? Could a paternity test put a wedge into that law?

“He could come into court here in California and claim, ‘Look, Michael Jackson is now deceased,'” Bloom said.

Complete coverage of Jackson’s life and death
Bloom explained the children don’t have any biological parents in their lives, and Rowe has only a minor role under the visitation and custody agreement that’s been reached. She said Lester could wait until Paris turns 18 and try to get her to perform a voluntary DNA test. She added Lester could try to get the family to agree now to a DNA test, but she thinks it’s “pretty unlikely,” because the probate court has said Michael is the father.

Bloom also commented on the long wait on Michael’s toxicology report. She said, usually, toxicology reports take about two-to-four weeks, while it’s been a six-week wait for Michael’s.

She said law enforcement may be holding up the results.

“(They) may already be in, but law enforcement is continuing its investigation into Dr. (conrad) Murray (Jackson’s personal physician at the time of his death) and other doctors who were involved in Michael Jackson’s care,” she said. “They like to keep information close to the vest. It helps them in the investigation.”

Another possibility: retesting for more medications. Bloom said, as doctors are investigated, police are learning about more and more medications, so authorities may be going back and retesting to see if those medications are in the pop star’s system.

The Jacksons were also due back in court Monday for a hearing on Michael’s estate. Bloom said Katherine Jackson has to be careful that she doesn’t challenge the will, because the will has a “no-contest” clause. If she does dispute the will, she would lose her 40 percent inheritance, according to Bloom.

However, Bloom said, Katherine is saying the executors have a suspicious array of activities around them, and Katherine wants the judge to keep a close eye on them to make sure that they’re turning over all the documents and information to her that she’s entitled to.

Bloom added Katherine wants to be named an executor under the will.

“The problem for her is that Michael Jackson didn’t select her,” she said, noting a record industry executive and attorney were selected by Michael to oversee legal and financial affairs of Michael’s estate.

But in the Probate Court, things are fluid,” she said. “The judge could rule otherwise.”

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