Establishing Paternity Grants Rights And Enforces Obligations

There are many reasons why a father or mother may want to establish the legal paternity of a child. It gives both parents the legal right to enjoy parental benefits relating to custody and visitation and enforce parental obligations such as child support.

At Cruz & Bano, P.A., in Orlando, we help mothers and fathers establish paternity throughout Central Florida. We are compassionate in our representation, helping you understand your options and finding the best and most cost-effective solution for you.

There Are Five Ways To Establish Paternity In Florida

Under Florida family law, parties can establish paternity in five ways:

  1. Presumption by marriage: If two people are married at the time a child is born, the law presumes that the husband is the legal father of the child. It is a rebuttable presumption, which means that you can change it in court with a DNA test.
  2. Acknowledgement of paternity: Unmarried parents can agree that a man is the legal father of the child. This can be done at birth by signing the appropriate form before leaving the hospital. It can also be done later by signing a specific form. The two parents must sign together, in the presence of two witnesses or a notary public, and file it with the Florida Office of Vital Statistics.
  3. Legitimation through marriage: The two parents can get married after the child is born and update the birth certificate on record with the Florida Office of Vital Statistics.
  4. Administrative DNA testing: Parties can submit an approved genetic test showing that a man is the biological father. The parties do not have to appear in court.
  5. Court-ordered paternity: This is the required path when one party contests paternity or refuses to take a DNA test.

Schedule A Free Initial Consultation To Learn More

Even when parents agree on the issue of paternity, mistakes in the paperwork can affect parental rights and cause problems later. Make sure you consult an attorney for help. With our free initial consultations, we make it easy for you to have a lawyer review an acknowledgement of paternity form and get advice about your options.

Call 407-459-1293 to reach attorneys Cruz and Bano or send them an email, and they will contact you. Hablamos español.