Establishing Paternity in California
Establishing paternity is an important process for both parents and children. In California, establishing paternity means legally determining the identity of a child’s father. Once paternity is established, the father has legal rights and responsibilities related to the child, such as the right to seek custody or visitation and the responsibility to provide financial support. Here’s what you need to know about establishing paternity in California.
Voluntary Declaration of Paternity
One way to establish paternity in California is through a voluntary declaration of paternity. This is a legal form that both parents sign acknowledging that the man identified on the form is the child’s father. The form can be signed at the hospital when the child is born, at a local child support agency, or at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Once the form is signed, it becomes a legal finding of paternity.
If the father does not voluntarily acknowledge paternity, the mother or the alleged father can file a petition in court to establish paternity. The court will typically order genetic testing to determine whether the man in question is the biological father of the child. If the test results indicate that the man is the father, the court will issue an order establishing paternity.
Benefits of Establishing Paternity
Establishing paternity has many benefits for both parents and children. Some of these benefits include:
· Child support: Once paternity is established, the father is legally obligated to provide financial support for the child.
· Health insurance: If the father has health insurance coverage, the child may be eligible for coverage as well.
· Inheritance rights: Children have the right to inherit from their parents, so establishing paternity can ensure that the child is entitled to an inheritance from the father.
· Legal rights and protections: Children have certain legal rights and protections, such as the right to receive social security benefits and the right to sue for wrongful death if the father dies.
Establishing paternity is an important process for both parents and children in California. It can provide legal recognition of the father-child relationship, as well as important benefits such as child support and health insurance coverage. Whether through a voluntary declaration of paternity or a court order, establishing paternity is an important step in ensuring that children have access to the support and resources they need to thrive.
If you need assistance with paternity, We The People offers several affordable paternity package options. Click here to navigate to our Paternity services page to learn more.
Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. Consult with a licensed and qualified attorney for advice specific to your situation.
This text is property of We The People® and may not be copied, printed, or distributed in any fashion.