Why should an unmarried father file a paternity case in San Diego? You may have completed paperwork at the hospital and you may be listed on the birth certificate as the father of the child. You may even be paying child support for your baby. However, there is one important legal issue you must be aware of:
You have no rights regarding custody decisions in the life of the child or right of parenting time without asserting your legal rights through a paternity action.
In the absence of valid paternity orders, the unmarried mother of a child has sole legal and physical custody to her child. She can even take the child and relocate out of the area or out of state.
We recommend the unmarried father file a paternity case to seek a DNA test (swab of the inner cheek of father and baby) and a request for orders from the Court establishing fatherhood, visitation rights and legal custody (the right to participate in decisions regarding the child’s welfare, health care, education and religion, etc.).
Many parties may actually request an order of paternity from the court including the child’s mother, father, a “putative” father, a local child support agency or an adoption agency. The Court may name a representative to advocate on behalf of a young child to protect their best interests.
Paternity also establishes legal rights of inheritance for your child and extends valuable protections to you as the father of the child. If you are an unmarried father of a child we invite you to protect your interests as a father and contact us or call 760-434-3330 to schedule an appointment for a remote or socially distanced consultation with one of our experienced Certified Family Law Specialists.
Learn about your legal status as the father of your child, and why we recommend an unmarried father file a paternity case in San Diego to ensure you have the right to visit with and participate actively in the decisions which will affect the life of your son or daughter.