Establishing Paternity: The Why and How
For married couples, "proving paternity" is not much of a process and more of an assumption. For those who are not married, proving paternity can be a difficult legal situation. Some fathers do not want to be tied to their child to avoid parental and financial responsibilities. On the other hand, some mothers do not want their child’s father in their life and will avoid telling the biological father that the child is theirs. Regardless of the situation, proving paternity is important for multiple reasons. Not only should the child know for their own peace of mind, but there are also legal and health benefits. Legally, a child will receive financial support payments as well as social security or veterans’ benefits. A child should also know their father in order to know his medical history. Without this knowledge, it can be easy for a child to contract illnesses that could easily be avoided if they had both parents’ medical history.
How to Prove Paternity Voluntarily
Voluntarily proving paternity is best for both parents. You avoid keeping secrets and/or potential confrontation. The easiest way to do so is for the father to be present at the time of birth. This does require the signing of a declaration of paternity but it does not require any form of DNA testing. If the father is not present at the time of birth, an affidavit is required. This will need to be done before the birth certificate is issued in order for the father’s name to be present on the birth certificate. If his name on the birth certificate is not a concern of both parents, the affidavit deadline extends to anytime before the child’s eighteenth birthday.
How to Prove Paternity Involuntarily
If the father will not voluntarily sign the legal paperwork and you would like your child’s father to be legally recognized, it is crucial to have an experienced attorney who can help. The mother will first sign the affidavit naming the child’s alleged father then try and get in contact with the man. This can be done through investigation if necessary. It is worthwhile to first allow the father to voluntarily establish paternity in the case that he was uninformed about the situation initially. If he still refuses to voluntarily claim paternity, genetic testing is the next step. Both parents and the child will submit to genetic testing to ensure that all parties are linked. Once the results reveal who the father is, the father will be notified within 60 days of testing.
Contact a Kane County Parentage Lawyer for Help
Proving parentage is a stressful time for both parents, especially for cases that are involuntary. The legal process can be tedious and frustrating if you do not have experience in that area. It is important to have a hardworking attorney on your side to ensure that your child’s true parents are known. If you are trying to prove paternity or prove against an accusation that has been made, contact our experienced St. Charles, IL paternity attorneys for a free consultation at 630-584-5550.