The Importance of Establishing Paternity: Benefits for Fathers and Children
Paternity is the legal fatherhood of a child. When married couples have children, paternity is automatically granted by law to the husband and wife when the baby is born. This means that the husband and wife are both recognized as legal parents without taking extra steps. In the case of unmarried couples, the parental rights of the biological father are not recognized until paternity has been established.
Legal steps must be taken in order for him to become a legal parent to his child, therefore establishing paternity first. Establishing paternity involves submitting certain documents and/or undergoing genetic testing in order to confirm that the man indeed is the biological father of the said child. Once paternity has been established, this gives fathers legal rights concerning their children such as visitation rights, custody, and financial obligations like paying child support or medical expenses. Although it can be challenging to establish paternity, especially in unmarried scenarios, it is nonetheless a pivotal part of ensuring children’s well-being and security by providing they can depend on their legally established parent for support now and in future years.Benefits of Establishing Paternity
Establishing paternity can have beneficial outcomes for both the father and the child involved. Firstly, the establishment of paternity officially recognizes the legal bond between a father and his child, providing further validation for those involved. This means that the father’s name can appear on the birth certificate and the unborn child is protected if something were to happen to the parent. Additionally, once paternity is verified, it opens up channels for possible inheritance or death benefits in addition to health care coverage and cash medical support which are essential for financial stability.
In addition to protecting a child’s rights to future monetary gain, establishing paternity allows children access to family medical history they may not have been able to get before. It also provides physical access when it comes time for custody decisions or parenting time agreements since it will be needed before asking a court system will order-related matters. All-in-all, establishing paternity greatly helps both fathers and their children in ways they may not have considered previously by supporting updated documentation and providing better accessibility to vital resources such as medical information or money Management options.Getting a Court Order to Establish Paternity
In order to establish paternity, a court order needs to be obtained. The easiest way to obtain a court order is to file an application for services with the Office of the Attorney General (OAG). Through this process, it may be possible to reach an agreement on paternity in which case the parents can sign an agreed order or request a DNA test before signing the agreed order. By going through the OAG for establishing paternity, parents may not have to appear in court as all work can be done by child support staff.
However, if there is no agreement between parents on paternity, then it may be necessary to file a paternity petition in court asking that an alleged father be named legal father. The court will then make a decision using evidence presented by both sides and decide if paternity should or should not become legal. It is important that parties involved understand they may need additional evidence aside from DNA testing such as witnesses or other documents related to their relationship in order for a judge to make an informed decision on paternity.Contact an Experienced Family Law Attorney in Texas
An experienced family law attorney in Harris County, Galveston County, Fort Bend County, Montgomery County, Brazoria County, Houston, Sugar Land, Missouri City, and Stafford, Texas at Thornton Esquire Law Group, PLLC, can help you explain and navigate the entire case process. Contact us today at www.thorntonesquirelawgroup.com for a free consultation.