What happens when one parent refuses to be a part of a newborn child’s life? Or, even worse, refuses to acknowledge the child as their own altogether?
Court Action to Establish Paternity
Unwed, alleged fathers are under no obligation to claim a child as their own. This means they can forego signing the birth certificate, and may even attempt to skirt their responsibility of contributing to the care of the child. In extreme cases, the father may even cease all communication with you, thus thwarting your attempts to establish paternity without involving the court. When this happens, what can you do? You can’t force him to sign anything he doesn’t want to. But you can file a court action to establish paternity.
The most effective means of establishing paternity, is to have the court order a DNA test. The father can refuse to submit to testing, but the consequences of doing so are extremely high. If he refuses to the test, he could be held in contempt of court, which could result in heavy fines or criminal charges.
Once the court establishes paternity, the father’s legal name will be added to the birth certificate. At this time, the mother may also be awarded child support payments from the father, if circumstances allow. The best way to get your case seen by a judge is to hire an experienced paternity attorney, who knows how to help you legally establish paternity of your child.
DNA Testing If the Father is Deceased
If the biological father has passed away, there are methods to DNA testing that can establish paternity:
- Aunt-Uncle: This is also called avuncular testing, and this method works because aunts and uncles share approximately 25% of their DNA with nieces and nephews.
- Siblings: Although an indirect option, this test helps determine whether two people share one or both parents
- Grandparents: This helps to determine whether or not the possible grandmother or grandfather is biologically related to the children
Contact The Springer Law Firm Today
Our Katy, Texas attorneys have a combined 85 years of experience. We understand the sensitive nature of establishing paternity of a child, and we are dedicated to helping you get the results you and your family deserve.
Call our firm at (281) 990-6025 or contact us online for a consultation.