Fort Lee Paternity Lawyer
There are numerous benefits to establishing the paternity of a minor child. When paternity is established, children get the opportunity to receive financial support and develop a bond with a parent. This also allows fathers to secure legal rights related to how their child is raised.
While establishing paternity can be instrumental in a family law case, the process is not always easy. This is particularly true when one party refuses to acknowledge paternity or voluntarily submit to DNA testing. With the help of a Fort Lee paternity lawyer, you could petition the court to formally establish the paternity of a minor child. To learn more, schedule a free consultation at Moskowitz Law Group today. A skilled family law attorney can answer your questions regarding paternity and help you understand your next steps.
Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity
Determining the paternity of a child does not always result in litigation or conflict. When both parents are on the same page, addressing paternity issues is relatively simple.
For many parents, issues of paternity are resolved before the mother ever leaves the hospital. This is possible through something known as the “Certificate of Parentage.” This certificate—which is also known as a voluntary acknowledgment—is a form executed by both parents. This document indicates that both parents acknowledge the paternity of the father.
Once the document is executed, it only needs to be filed with the Department of Health to be official. When this happens, the father’s name is then added to the birth certificate. It is difficult to retract a Certificate of Parentage, which leads some individuals to request DNA testing prior to signing off. A Fort Lee paternity attorney can provide legal guidance during this process.
Pursuing a Paternity Action
There are many situations where one or both parties will refuse to voluntarily acknowledge paternity. There is a legal process known as a paternity action that allows the court to determine whether or not an individual is the father of a minor child. A Fort Lee family law attorney can help initiate a paternity action by filing a petition with the New Jersey Superior Court.
There are different parties that have the power to initiate a paternity action. The child’s mother has the right to move forward with a case if the purported father refuses to acknowledge paternity. A father could also pursue a paternity action in order to obtain their rights as a parent.
There are other parties that have the right to pursue a paternity case outside of the mother and the father. For example, a child or their legal guardian could seek to establish paternity. Alternatively, a county welfare agency also has the power to request a finding of paternity if the child is receiving state assistance.
If the person believed to be the father disputes paternity, the court usually orders genetic testing. This involves a DNA test to determine if there is a match between the potential father and the child. If a match exists, the court will typically issue an order of paternity. This gives the father rights as well as responsibilities when it comes to the child.
Speak with a Fort Lee Paternity Attorney Right Away
Paternity is an important issue for parents and children alike. If you are considering a paternity action, it is vital that you have an attorney on your side who understands the process.
At Moskowitz Law Group, we have the experience needed to assert your rights in a paternity case. Set up a free consultation with a Fort Lee paternity lawyer to get started.