Miriam Lee filed paternity and child support documents against McKnight last year in Orange County, Florida. She claims that her 14-year-old son is the product of a brief fling she had with McKnight back in 1996.
The key here is that this is a case where a decision was made by default. There were no arguments made by Brian McKnight or his lawyers. A representative for McKnight reiterates the point: "The judgment in Florida was a default judgment made without Brian present. He is still looking to establish paternity, and is awaiting the results of a recent test." This woman, Miriam Lee, simply went into court and brought a suit.
By McKnight not addressing the issue head-on, he basically rendered a judgment against himself. When McKnight goes to court to appeal this decision, I am sure he will argue paternity (meaning that Miriam Lee will need to prove that he is the daddy, via a DNA test). The statute of limitations in Florida for establishment of paternity is four years after the child's 18th birthday. Since the boy is only 14, McKnight is within the statute. He will also probably dispute how long he should be required to pay back child support.
If the DNA test shows that McKnight is indeed the father, what is the appropriate amount he should pay in back child support? The current ruling would be the equivalent of about $2,033 a month for 14 years. Is that fair? We will see how it plays out. There is no statute of limitations in Florida for child support back payment enforcement.
Bad legal advice, or bad call on McKnight's part? Why didn't he simply "man up" and at least fight the fight from the beginning? Now McKnight is on the defensive and has to undo a judgment against him. This is a mess for him! McKnight will now join the ranks of other celebrities who have had to contest paternity publicly, including Godfather of Soul James Brown and comedy legend Eddie Murphy, to name a few.
Brian McKnight has another son that he fathered with another Miriam (Miriam Moreno). Brian McKnight currently pays child support to 1-year-old Evan McKnight. We first heard about this child back in April of this year. Strange about the two Miriams! Miriam Lee should be careful of what she wishes for, though. If this child is his, McKnight could start making arguments for custody.
In any case, not taking responsibility for his legal dilemmas suggests that Brian McKnight could use some parenting lessons himself.