Fatherhood is something that is very dear to any man, and the fact remains that every child deserves to have a father. In the legal sense, establishing paternity means proving someone to be the father of a child. It encompasses all legal rights and duties inherent in fatherhood. Frank’s Family Law Practice in Winter Park can assist you in answering questions and providing advice regarding any paternity issue you might be facing.
Compared with establishing maternity, paternity is a much more complex issue, considering that the biological father is not apparently obvious. In the state of Florida, there are a plethora of reasons why one would need to establish paternity, the outcome of which can have a significant impact on the child’s life, the mother, as well as the father.
Paternity that is established can provide the child financial support, health, and life insurance, medical history of the family, a right to inheritance and such other benefits as social or military securities. As for the parents—the biological mother and father—an established paternity gives each one a right of visitation, child support, custody rights, contributing to the legal decisions of the child, etc.
Under Florida Law, there are 5 ways a father can legally establish paternity. These are:
A man is legally considered to be the father of a child if he is legally married to the mother when the child is born. Under a legal marital relationship, no further action is needed to officially prove paternity if the father and mother are legally married.
This is a form made available by law for a couple who are not married as at when the child is born to jointly fill and sign, acknowledging that the male signature is the father of the newly born child. The form can be filled and completed in the hospital where the child is born. It can also be filled at a later date, after which full legal rights and responsibilities are transferred of fatherhood is transferred to the male signatory.
If you need more advice relating to this, contact Frank’s Family Law Practice in Winter Park.
In a situation where the child’s fatherhood is in dispute, it may become necessary for a judge of competent jurisdiction to give an order that legally establishes the paternity of the child. During this process, the judge will entertain and hear evidence relating to the “allege” father and after everything decides whether to establish paternity or not. There are instances where the court may require the tendering of genetic testing as a way of proving the parentage of the child. At Frank’s Family Law Practice in Winter Park, our paternity and child custody attorneys can help you get through the court process to establish your right as a father.
If in a paternity dispute you do not wish to attest to an administrative order, you can decide to take a genetic test. The child and his/her mother will also be required to complete this test. Upon conclusion of the test, if it proves your paternity, your name would be added to the child’s birth certificate by Florida’s office Vital Statistics.
The paternity law of the state of Florida entails that if the unmarried couple later get married after the birth of the child in question, both must update the child’s birth certificate at Florida’s Office of Vital Statistics, after which the man would be listed as the father of the child.
If you have any questions regarding establishing paternity, divorce, and custody of children, contacts the office of Fran’s Family Law Practice in Winter Park. Our attorneys give each case the attention it deserves. To schedule an appointment, call us today at (407) 629 2208.