Program Operations Manual System (POMS)
TN 123 (12-23)
GN 00306.625 South Carolina Intestacy Laws
Child acquires status of child if:
the parents of illegitimate child subsequently marry; or
the child is legitimated by the Family Court (note, however, that the Supreme Court
of South Carolina raised serious doubts in a 1986 decision about whether a Family
Court had the authority to legitimate a child; therefore, any application of this
provision should receive careful consideration under SSR 83-37c.); or
the child is the product of a bigamous marriage, where either party entered the marriage
in good faith and in ignorance of the other party's incapacity; or
(I) the natural parents participated in a marriage ceremony before or after the birth
of the child, even though the attempted marriage is void; or
(I) effective 04/16/77 through 06/19/85, paternity is established by a preponderance
of the evidence; or
(I) effective 06/20/85 through 06/30/87, the father has signed an instrument acknowledging
the child as his; or
(I) effective 06/20/85 through 06/30/87, paternity is established by order or decree
of a court of competent jurisdiction during the lifetime of the father. For claims
filed on or after 11/27/98, or pending on that date, a court order during the father's
lifetime is not required. SSA may decide paternity before and after the father's death
using a preponderance of the evidence standard; or
(I) effective 07/01/87, paternity is established by an adjudication commenced before
or within 6 months after the father's death. For claims filed on or after 11/27/98,
or pending on that date, there is no time limit within which paternity must be established
after the father's death. If the adjudication is commenced before the father's death,
the burden of proof is a preponderance of the evidence; if after his death, the standard
is clear and convincing proof.
Effective 07/01/94, a foreign paternity determination whether established through
administrative or judicial process creates a conclusive presumption of paternity.
Evidence to be considered in making child-status determinations:
The following types of evidence create a presumption of paternity that can be rebutted
by a preponderance of the evidence: effective 07/01/94, genetic test results that
show a statistical probability of paternity of 95% or higher, or a verified voluntary
acknowledgment of paternity; and effective 07/14/94, a birth certificate containing
the signature of the mother and the putative father.
Effective 07/01/84, other types of evidence admissible to prove or disprove paternity
include: results of genetic tests from physicians, agencies, hospitals, laboratories,
or other qualified testing facilities properly verified to show the chain of custody
of blood samples; the refusal of a party to submit to a genetic or other ordered test*; an expert's opinion concerning the time of conception; the testimony of a husband
and wife as to any relevant matter, including marriage and parentage; the presence
or the absence of physical characteristics and similarities between the child and
the putative father; and any other relevant and competent evidence.
Father acquires status of parent if the conditions of items A.1. through A.8., above,
are satisfied. However, he can only acquire status of parent under A.7. for periods
between 06/20/85 and 06/30/87, if he reasonably supported the child within the last
3 years of the child's life as a minor, and under A.8. if the father has openly treated
the child as his and has not refused to support the child.
*If there was a court order and refusal to obey such an order, determine if there was
a later court determination based on that refusal and any other evidence in the case.
If so, consider the later court determination under the preponderance of the evidence
or clear and convincing evidence standard. If a paternity determination was not issued
by the court following such an order and refusal, submit the claim to the Office of
the General Counsel (OGC) for a determination about whether the refusal to comply
with the court order has any evidently significance under State law; whether the evidence
in the claim meets the standard of proof applied by the South Carolina courts.