The establishment of paternity is the legal process of identifying the biological father of a child. With it comes privileges, rights, and responsibilities for both parents. Every child is entitled to know their biological father. It plays a vital role in the development and well-being of the child and their sense of identity. In addition, research supports that father-child bonding influences a child’s future relationships and enhances communication and cognitive skills.
At Downer Law, we are strong advocates for parental rights and children’s rights in paternity actions. A determination of paternity can dramatically introduce family law issues such as child support, child custody, and visitation rights. We have extensive experience in evaluating and litigating paternity cases. Our goal is to provide practical solutions for all family law issues.

Establishing Paternity Rights Entitles a Child to have:

How Paternity is Established

When a couple is married, and a child is born, the child’s legal father is assumed to be the mother’s spouse. When a child is born to an unmarried mother, the child’s father can complete a Paternity Acknowledgment Form if both parents agree. In that case, the father’s name will be added to the birth certificate. When the mother of a child or the alleged father is not in agreement, paternity can be established by filing for a civil action in court. Genetic samples can prove or disprove paternity. Once paternity is determined, the parents can move forward to petition for child support, custody, and visitation rights.

Solutions for Complicated Issues regarding Paternity and Family Law Matters

At Downer Law, we represent mother’s and father’s rights in paternity actions. Many times, a mother seeks to prove paternity to obtain needed child support or to share in the responsibilities of child rearing. If a child was born out of wedlock, an alleged father might have to take legal action to assume their role as a parent. Without legal paternity, a mother can deny visitation rights, can relocate, and refuse to allow any access to her child. An alleged father can disestablish paternity by filing a petition with the court. However, depending on the facts of the case, the court can require an alleged father to pay child support, even if the child is not biologically his.

Contact Downer Law to schedule an appointment at our office.

We represent clients in Volusia, Seminole, and Orange county.

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