Paper: Heath May Have Fathered a Love Child

Paper: Heath May Have Fathered a Love Child
Heath Ledger
Lisa Rose/JPI

03/31/2008 AT 06:30 AM EDT

One of Heath Ledger's estranged uncles claims that the late actor may have fathered a love child when he was a teenager, according to a report in Sydney's Daily Telegraph.

When he was just 17 years old, Ledger reportedly dated a 25-year-old woman – who discovered she was pregnant after the relationship ended and later gave birth to baby girl. Although the woman was living with another man at the time, Ledger's uncle Hadyn claimed to the paper, "There is a very real possibility that Heath was the father."

But in a television interview, Hadyn called this possibility only a rumor.

"It is a rumor and it is one that has been out there for sometime, not only within our family but certainly in the wider community of Perth and it's certainly a rumor that I'm aware of and other people have certainly been aware of it," he told Australia's Channel Nine News. "It is only a rumor and I simply answered by saying yes it's a possibility."

The actor – who died in January at the age of 28, following an accidental overdose of prescription drugs – has a daughter, Matilda, with actress Michelle Williams.

His will, written before Matilda's birth, left his entire estate to his parents and three sisters. Although his father, Kim, has promised Williams and the 2-year-old "will be taken care of," the uncertainty surrounding the will has reignited a family feud between Kim and his three estranged brothers.

The long-simmering tensions date back more than 15 years, when Kim was made executor of his grandfather Sir Frank Ledger's $2-million estate. "It plunged into enormous debt," Mike Ledger, one of Kim's brothers, told PEOPLE. (According to Australia's The Sunday Times, a Supreme Court judge eventually removed Kim from overseeing the estate.)

The brothers now claim Kim is not capable of managing the late Oscar nominee's considerable assets.

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