14:50 11 October 2013
A US judge recently handed down a ruling in Hancock County, Ohio and described it as “strange, strange situation.” This is because he cannot declare a man who disappeared for nearly three decades but recently returned perfectly healthy, as officially alive.
Donald Miller of Ohio went missing in 1986 when he left his wife and two children with significant amount of debt. After eight years, he was declared legally dead in 1994. Mr Miller said that he fled his home after he lost his job.
By 1994, his back child support payments amounted to £15,646. After he was declared dead, his “widow” became entitled to Social Security death benefits to support their children.
However, in 2005, Mr Miller re-emerged when he attempted to apply for a driving license.
Judge Allan Davis found that death rulings cannot be overturned after three years. He said: "We've got the obvious here. A man sitting in the courtroom, he appears to be in good health.”
"I don't know where that leaves you, but you're still deceased as far as the law is concerned."
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