Determining the paternity of a child can be important for a variety of legal reasons. Whether you are seeking visitation rights or pursuing or challenging child support, establishing paternity can play a critical role. If a child’s paternity has not been identified, that missing piece of information can be important for both parents. If you have a legal need to determine a child’s paternity, you should discuss your situation with an experienced Central Texas family law attorney.
The Need to Establish Paternity
There are any number of reasons you might need to establish a child’s paternity through a DNA test:
If you are a mother who is seeking child support from the child’s father and if the presumptive father denies or doubts his own paternity, a paternity test will clear up the issue. If the presumptive father is unwilling to be tested for DNA or is uncooperative in the process, the court can compel him to submit to the test.
If you believe you are the father of a child and seek to share the responsibility and rewards of raising that child, a paternity test can identify you as the father and establish your parental rights. Again, if the child’s mother is disinclined to go along with a paternity test for the child, the court can make it happen – if it is warranted.
Alternatively, either the mother or the presumptive father of a child might want to demonstrate – for legal purposes – that he (the presumptive father) is, in fact, not the child’s father. Testing for such can also be mandated by the court.
Whatever the reason, establishing paternity often plays an important role in cases involving child support, shared custody, and visitation. An experienced family law attorney can help you better understand your rights.
Once paternity is determined through a DNA test, it can significantly alter the course of a legal claim. If it is established that the presumptive father is the child’s actual father, he will naturally share the responsibility for child support. Additionally, the father may be responsible for his share of the child’s health insurance and medical expenses. Finally, once the father is identified, he may pursue shared custody or a visitation schedule with his child.
Seek Legal Guidance
Situations involving paternity issues are often fraught with emotion. Do not try to navigate this rocky terrain on your own; seek the counsel of dedicated family law attorney with experience in cases involving paternity testing. Your experienced Central Texas family law attorney will aggressively advocate for your best interests.
If You Have a Paternity Issue, Consult with a Central Texas Family Law Attorney Today
If you have a legal issue that hinges on paternity, it can be a difficult situation, but you do not have to face it alone. The dedicated legal team at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Central Texas has the experience, skill, and compassion to help guide your claim toward its most positive resolution. A child’s paternity is an important matter, and we are here to help, so please contact or call us at (254) 220-4225 today.