Family law matters are some of the most personal legal processes that a person can face. If you are facing legal issue that involves your family, your lawyer should be respectful and compassionate when working with you, yet experienced and aggressive in the courtroom so the best results can be won.
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Any woman who is pregnant or has a child, or any man who has reason to believe that he is the father of a child, may bring proceedings to determine the paternity of the child when paternity has not been established by law or otherwise.
Paternity and parental rights must be established before you can file a claim for child support, custody/visitation, or parental responsibility. Even if you’re not married, once paternity is established, you should have the same rights as though you are a divorced parent.
If you know you are the father of your minor child and you want to be involved in that child’s life, you should be able to gain access to your child once you have established paternity. If you are a mother who needs child support from your minor child’s father, establishing paternity should allow you to obtain a child support order as well as life insurance on the father for child support.
Generally, if a paternity action is contested, the parties will undergo scientific tests that are generally acceptable within the scientific community to show a probability of paternity. Test results are admissible in evidence. If the test results show the alleged father cannot be the biological father, the case shall be dismissed with prejudice.
If paternity is established, the Court will then decide child support, (including health insurance, day care expenses, and uncovered medical/dental bills) and a time-sharing schedule.