Paternity is a critical issue in many divorces. Paternity is the legal precedent of a child’s father. It establishes the father and it affords certain legal rights and responsibilities. What many people may not know is that paternity can be assumed under a variety of circumstances.
For example, if you are married, the father in the marriage is assumed when a child is born. Similarly, if a child is born to an unmarried couple but they get married later or they sign a document acknowledging paternity, then paternity is assumed. If a father voluntarily says that he is the father, then in that case paternity is also assumed. There are other possible conditions where paternity is assumed, but they involve similar iterations of what we described before.
Unfortunately, sometimes paternity becomes a legal contest. A mother insists that someone is the father of their child, or a father does not hold up his end of the bargain when it comes to raising a child. If a paternity test is ordered, then the individual who is alleged to be the father will have to submit to a blood or DNA test to establish paternity.
If you are determined to be the father, then you are responsible for your share or support and responsibilities. If you have questions about how this affects you, or what you need to do when you are facing a paternity suit, then you should consult with an experienced attorney.
Source: FindLaw, “Legal Significance of Paternity,” Accessed Nov. 7, 2016