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San Jose Family & Divorce Lawyers / San Jose Paternity Lawyer

San Jose Paternity Lawyer

When children are born, sometimes it is unknown who the father is. The mother may want to order a paternity case in order to get child support and other benefits for her and the child.

If both parents are married when the child is born, there is a legal presumption that the husband is the father and the wife is the mother of the child. In a domestic partnership, there is also a presumption that the domestic partners are the child’s parents. In cases in which the parents are not married or registered domestic partners, parentage of the children needs to be legally established.

Paternity becomes an issue in many child custody and child support cases, as parentage needs to be established before the court can order custody, visitation, child support, and name change. When parentage is in doubt, the court may order the alleged father, mother, and child to submit to genetic testing. Contact a San Jose paternity lawyer from Argyris Mah, LLP to learn more about the process.

How to Establish Paternity

In California, there are several ways to establish paternity:

  • Voluntary Declaration of Paternity. If both parents agree on the biological father, they can sign a Voluntary Declaration of Paternity form at the hospital when the child is born or at a later time.
  • Court order. If there is a dispute over paternity or if one parent refuses to acknowledge paternity, either parent can file a paternity case in court. The court may order genetic testing to determine paternity. If the test confirms paternity, the court will issue an order establishing legal paternity.
  • If the child’s parents are married at the time of birth, the husband is presumed to be the legal father in California.

Benefits of Establishing Paternity

Establishing paternity has benefits for the mother, father, and child:

  • Legal rights and responsibilities. Establishing paternity ensures that both parents have legal rights and responsibilities towards the child. This includes rights such as visitation, custody, and the obligation to provide financial support.
  • Child support. Once paternity is established, the father may be required to provide child support. This financial support can be crucial for the child’s well-being, covering expenses like education, healthcare, and everyday living costs.
  • Parenting time and visitation. For the father, establishing paternity provides legal grounds to seek parenting time or visitation rights.
  • Access to medical information. Knowing the father’s medical history can be important for the child’s health. It allows for better understanding and management of potential genetic conditions.
  • Health insurance. A child may be entitled to certain health insurance through the father.
  • Social Security and veteran’s benefits. Children of deceased fathers who served in the military or had Social Security benefits may be entitled to these benefits.
  • Inheritance rights. Establishing paternity ensures that the child has inheritance rights from both parents.

Our San Jose Paternity Lawyers Are Prepared to Assist You Today

It’s important for children to know who their father is. This offers peace of mind and other benefits.

A San Jose paternity lawyer from Argyris Mah, LLP can help you establish paternity and guide you through the often complicated legal process. To schedule a consultation, fill out the online form or call (408) 214-6366.