A trial lawyer helps unmarried parents establish paternity and gain legal rights to child custody, support, and visitation. Taking legal action in paternity matters is a complex issue that requires the expertise of a lawyer who is experienced in family matters.
Trial Lawyer: Importance of Establishing Paternity
Determining who is the father of a child helps to establish the father’s legal rights and responsibilities and determines who is responsible for supporting the child. More importantly, it protects the child’s right to inherit. Children born to unmarried parents do not have a ‘legal father’.
Trial Lawyer: Filing A Paternity Lawsuit
When either parent or in some cases, a child, finds it necessary to file suit to establish parentage, a trial lawyer is needed. Most paternity actions are brought by the mother of the child when the father of the child denies paternity. However, although it’s less common, the father of the child may file a paternity lawsuit when his parental rights have been denied by the mother.
Factors that influence parents’ rights and obligations:
- The father’s right to custody or parenting time with his child.
- The mother’s right to pursue child support from the father.
- Prevent the father from gaining custody or parenting time with a child.
- Help a man avoid paying child support for a child that is not his.
In some cases, the courts consider how many years have passed with a child believing a certain man is their father. This can make disproving paternity difficult because of the emotional and psychological effects it may have on the child.
Trial Lawyer: Grounds For Challenging Paternity
Many paternity proceedings rely on medical evidence that supports the case, whether it discredits the father or supports his decision to voluntarily acknowledge paternity. This includes the results of blood tests, however, sometimes blood tests produce erroneous results. Grounds for challenging a paternity claim may also include tainted lab results, fraudulent lab results, proof of infertility or sterility, or proof that lab results were tampered with.
Trial Lawyer: Proving Paternity
When paternity is in question, a family law attorney effectively represents the parent’s interests in these often emotional and challenging cases. Blood tests are frequently used to help determine whether the alleged father is biologically related to a child, although blood tests alone don’t determine who the father may actually be.
Trial Lawyer: MO Rev Stat § 210.822.
Establishing paternity in Missouri is done through either DNA testing, when necessary, or by an affidavit, signed by the child’s father, admitting paternity. DNA tests are the most accurate way of determining paternity and are the primary admissible method for proving paternity in a court of law. DNA tests can currently determine paternity with 99.9% accuracy and can rule out paternity with 100% accuracy.
Trial Lawyer: Once Paternity Is Established
At the conclusion of the lawsuit and paternity has been established, child support and custody arrangements need to be made. The trial lawyer will guide his client in these proceedings. Both parents have important legal responsibilities and obligations. Decisions regarding the child should be arrived at with the best interests of the child in mind.
Trial Lawyer: Divine Law Office, LLC
When you need a trial lawyer to represent your interests in establishing paternity, call Craig M. Divine at the Divine Law Office, LLC in Kansas City. Craig is a trial lawyer experienced in family law matters, including divorce and legal separation, paternity, custody and visitation, child support and more.
Trial Lawyer: FREE consultation
When you have a child with someone you are not married to and need to establish that you are the father, you need a trial lawyer to protect your rights by filing a paternity action. That is the best way to ensure you have a say in what goes on in your child’s life. Furthermore, it the only way to ensure a regular schedule of visitation that is enforceable in the courts.