Even while it brought her international attention, the paternity suit filed by Arkansas woman Lunden Roberts against former Vice President Joe Biden‘s son Hunter Biden has always been seen by her as a “family matter,” her attorney says — and one she only pressed because Hunter left her no choice.
In court papers filed Wednesday, Roberts’ lawyers, Clint and Jennifer Lancaster, told the court that DNA testing had proved Hunter was the father of her child, who was born in August 2018, even as Hunter repeatedly denied even having sex with her.
(His attorneys and a spokesman did not respond to a request for comment.)
The Lancasters told the court they did not expect Hunter to contest the paternity testing and, Clint tells PEOPLE, the next phase of the case would be determining what child support Hunter owes. Clint noted, however, that settlement discussions had been ongoing.
“My client has never doubted the paternity of this child, has never equivocated,” Clint says. “She has never wavered. She has never doubted the results.”
Roberts, Clint says, “is a very, very private person” — though he says they’d had a conversation about the attention a public suit would bring — and he declined to provide much detail about how Roberts became involved with Hunter beyond saying they met in the Washington, D.C., area.
Still, there are clues to what led to the paternity suit, which is the latest in Hunter’s ongoing personal troubles.
According to one of the motions filed on Roberts’ behalf on Wednesday, Hunter “refus[ed] to continue to support his child” and in an earlier motion in the case, Roberts’ attorneys said Hunter had admitted he was the father of her child — together suggesting Roberts appealed to the court only when Hunter’s support ran dry.
“This is a parenting and child support issue between her and Mr. Biden,” Clint, her attorney, previously told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
“She really does not want this to be a media spectacle,” Clint said. “She does not want this to affect Joe Biden’s campaign. She just wants this baby to get financial support from the baby’s father.”
Speaking with PEOPLE, Clint says that while they have known about the confirmation of Hunter’s paternity since soon after he took the test, on Nov. 9, they decided to wait to tell the court.
“She specifically wanted to give Hunter time to talk to his family. She’s been very cautious to make sure none of the Bidens see this baby for the first time on a news outlet,” Clint says.
“Ms. Roberts is committed to Hunter Biden and his family having the best relationship with the child, whatever that may be, whenever they’re ready,” Clint says. The child is already surrounded by love on its mother’s side, he says.
Clint says he has not heard from Vice President Biden, though he previously reached out to the campaign.
On other questions about the relationship between Hunter and Roberts, Clint demurred.
“She considers her relationship with Hunter to be between her and Hunter,” he says.
Roberts’ suit stated only that she and Hunter “were in a relationship” and had a child born in August 2018 in Independence County. The child was not further identified.
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One of the motions on Wednesday sought to have the child’s identifying information kept hidden from the public in order to protect the child, given its connection to the 2020 presidential election.
A hearing is set for early December in Arkansas.
The younger son of Vice President Biden, Hunter was sued by Roberts in late May in Independence County.
She asked the court to confirm her child’s paternity and order Hunter to pay child support, including health care costs, according to a copy of the petition obtained by PEOPLE. On Wednesday she also asked the court to award her back her costs and attorney fees in the case.
In a brief answer to Roberts’ suit filed in August, Hunter denied all of the allegations made against him.
According to a profile in July in The New Yorker, he said he never had sex with Roberts. But in October, he agreed to the DNA testing.