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Jade Quirke
Family Solicitor
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HUMAN RIGHTS: Shofman v Russia (Application no 74826/01)
Date:6 DEC 2005

(European Court of Human Rights; 24 November 2005) [2006] 1 FLR 680

The introduction of a time-limit for the institution of paternity proceedings could be justified by the desire to ensure legal certainty in family relations and to protect the interests of the child. However, where a husband did not become aware that he was not, or might not be, the father of the child until after the one-year time bar on paternity suits under Russian law, the inflexible time-limit represented a breach of his human rights which was not proportionate to the legitimate aim pursued.