The Importance of Establishing Paternity
When a woman gives birth, she may or may not know who is the father of the child. Even if the mother knows who the father of the child is, the father may dispute this. Further, the law makes assumptions about the paternity of the child in some cases and if this is not correct, then legal action may need to be taken to set the record straight.
No matter what the situation is, it is extremely beneficial to the child to make sure that paternity is established at some point. If you have questions about the paternity process, or need help establishing paternity, you should contact a knowledgeable paternity lawyer to help you with the process.
Benefits of Establishing Paternity
There are several benefits to establishing paternity, especially for a child. Establishing paternity allows a child, and his or her other parent, to have the right to child support. Establishing paternity may also allow the child to be covered under any health insurance plan that the father has. Moreover, paternity gives a child the right to inheritance from the father, the right to Social Security benefits, the right to life insurance benefits, and the right to veterans benefits if applicable.
Beyond the financial benefits, establishing paternity can also have many emotional benefits for both the father and the child. Paternity comes with parental rights and the father may be granted parenting time and parental decision making responsibility if the court finds it is in the best interest of the child. Studies have found that children who have relationships with both parents tend to fare better than those with absent fathers.
How to Establish Paternity
There are several ways to establish paternity. First, if the mother is married at the time that she gives birth, or was married when the child was conceived, then her spouse is presumed to be the father of the child. This is a legal presumption that can be rebutted by evidence. However, in the absence of contrary evidence, this person will be legally deemed the father.
Paternity can also be established right after birth if the father signs a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity at the hospital. Paternity can also be established by the Department of Healthcare and Family Services, Child Support Services, and by the court through a judicial process.
Contact Us for Professional Help
The easiest way to establish paternity is immediately after the birth. Yet if paternity has not been established, or it is in dispute, then it is not too late to get paternity established for the benefit of the child, mother, and putative father. If you are trying to establish paternity and need assistance, you should contact a skilled paternity lawyer. Our compassionate DuPage County paternity lawyers at Davi Law Group, LLC can help you establish or dispute paternity.