Orlando Lawyer Helps You Establish Paternity
Supporting you in filing a paternity action and asserting your parental rights
Paternity is fatherhood. Beyond merely having your name on a child's birth certificate, proving legal paternity entitles you to all the rights and responsibilities that come with fatherhood. Our paternity lawyer, David Scott Glicken, has the experience to advise you and advocate for your rights if it should come to a fight for your rights.
Both you and your child benefit from your presence, but if you are not married to your child's mother you will have to assert your custody rights for parenting time with your child. The Glicken Law Firm is prepared to support you in your efforts to be a consistent presence in your child's life.
How do you establish paternity in Florida?
There are five ways to establish paternity:
- Marriage - the parents of the child are married to each other at the time of the child's birth
- Acknowledgement of paternity - The unmarried parents of a child can sign a Paternity Acknowledgement form either before they leave the hospital or later through the health department, DCF office or the Florida Office of Vital Statistics.
- Administrative order based on genetic testing - Both the mother and the man presumed to be the father take a genetic test. If the test proves the man to be the biological father, an Administrative Order of Paternity is issued.
- Court order - The judge rules on paternity in a court proceeding
- Legitimation - This occurs when the mother and father of the child marry after the child is born. They can then update the child's birth certificate by submitting a copy of the marriage license and a signed Acknowledgement of Paternity form.
What is the difference between biological paternity and legal paternity?
Legal paternity designates the legal father of the child as recognized by the courts, and that man may or may not be the actual biological father of the child. If a man has fathered a child with a woman who is married to another man, he can bring a paternity action and assert his right to legal paternity of that child, but if the judge decides that it is in the best interest of the child for the non-biological father to retain legal paternity, the court has the final ruling.
A paternity action is an order filed with the court to establish paternity. This action can be filed by a man who believes that he is the father of a child with a woman whom he is not married to, an unmarried woman who is pregnant or has a child, or the child may bring a paternity action if none has been established.
An unmarried woman who has given birth to a child that was fathered by a man who is no longer in her life can file a paternity action to establish the legal paternity of her child's father so that she can pursue child support for her child.
Unmarried fathers who want to establish their right to have parenting time with their child, and participate in raising the child must file a paternity action, and unmarried men who have been named in a paternity action, but who wish to prove that they are not indeed the child's biological father, can use a paternity action to disestablish paternity.
How do paternity tests work?
DNA or genetic testing compares the unique genetic profile of the presumed father with that of the child to determine if he is indeed the biological father. It requires a swab of the inside of the man's cheek and the child's cheek. The results are processed in a lab, and they are generally available in about three weeks through the mail. A paternity test is inexpensive, painless, and it will tell if that man is the father with a 99% positive test result, or it will rule him out as the father with a 0% positive.
If the paternity test is court ordered, the results are also given to the court, which will then rule on the child's paternity and decide the father's child support obligation.
Contact a family law attorney who is experienced with paternity issues
Dealing with the establishing paternity can be complex and emotional. Work with attorney David Scott Glicken, who has 35 years of experience taking on complicated family law cases with integrity and discretion. Call us at (407) 648-5400 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today to discuss your case.