Why is it so important to establish paternity?

child with parent mother

You may have heard of the term paternity before as it is the legal establishment of the identity of a child’s father. Oftentimes, individuals do not realize that the name indicated on a child’s birth certificate as the father does not mean that the individual is the child’s biological father. Paternity is often a sensitive subject for parents who are no longer together. However, establishing legal paternity is critical to ensure a child receives financial and emotional support from their father. Keep reading to learn the significance of establishing legal paternity and discover how an experienced Pensacola Paternity Lawyer can help you pursue child support to meet your child’s needs. 

Why is establishing legal paternity essential when seeking child support?

In today’s society, the cost of living has made it nearly impossible for single parents to financially support their children alone without a second source of income. Therefore, you may seek child support payments from your children’s father. However, when it comes to child custody and child support, legal obligations only exist to the child’s biological father. Having that said, it may be necessary to establish paternity.

In some cases, the father of a child may refuse to admit they are the biological father to avoid financially supporting the child. It is imperative to note that paternity can be established voluntarily or involuntarily. Therefore, a father who is unwilling to support their child voluntarily can be compelled to do so after a paternity lawsuit. Despite their arguments, you can obtain a court order that requires the probable father to undergo DNA testing to determine legal paternity. Research shows that genetic saliva and blood tests can establish paternity with 99% accuracy. Therefore, once a DNA test has been submitted and paternity is established, you can seek child support to provide money for your child’s necessities. Ultimately, the legal significance of paternity is the legal establishment of financial support from the father.

Furthermore, it is important to understand that unmarried fathers have no legal rights until they complete a paternity test. Without paternity, unmarried fathers cannot obtain various rights such as custody, visitation, or the right to make decisions about the child’s life. Therefore, if an unmarried father does not establish paternity, they risk losing their parental rights. If they avoid confirming paternity to prevent being liable for child support, they can be forced by the court to submit to testing to determine whether they are legally liable as the child’s biological father.

If you need help determining a father’s legal obligations, please don’t hesitate to reach out to a dedicated lawyer from The Law Office of James M. Burns. With years of experience, we can help you establish legal paternity that will secure financial support from the child’s father. Allow our firm to fight on your behalf today to reach a favorable outcome.