Minnesota Paternity Lawyer
It is very important to establish paternity because the father of the child has no legal rights to the child. This means there is no right to parenting time or custody without legally establishing paternity when doubt exists. Until paternity is established, the mother has sole legal custody of the child until the court determines another arrangement is in the best interest of the child. At the same time, the mother cannot receive any child support from the father until paternity is determined.
To determine paternity, two ways are used. They are: Genetic testing and recognition of parentage. It is important to consult with your Minnesota divorce lawyer when determining which route to take.
If there is doubt that a man may be the father of the child or there is more than one man claiming to be the father, anyone involved can request a genetic test. While a genetic test is not required to establish paternity, it is the way in which the father can be determined and it is 99.9% accurate. This removes any and all doubt that the father is the father and can help determine who is. Once that determination is made, custody can be established, parenting time determined, and child support sought.
Recognition Of Parentage
Genetic testing is not required because of what is called a “Recognition of Parentage.” With an ROP, both parents sign a sworn statement that states the man is the father. The ROP is then filed with the Minnesota Department of Health. Once filed, the statement is final if the mother is not married to someone else and both parents are at least 18 years old. While you can complete an ROP at any time, it is best to have your Minnesota paternity lawyer help you when you do to ensure it is done correctly and to make sure genetic testing is not the best route to take in your case. It is very important that you know your rights and how they will be affected once the ROP is in effect.
Nonetheless, any time there is a question regarding paternity, genetic testing is always an option. If there is no doubt as to who the father is, then an ROP will suffice. It is very important that you consult with your attorney either way due to the fact that establishing paternity changes many things. Once established, it can never be refuted. This means that the father has a responsibility to the child until that child is at least 18 years old.
Contact A Minnesota Divorce Lawyer
The question of paternity can create a number of issues. To resolve these issues, it is best to speak to your family law attorney so that you can move forward with establishing the paternity of the child for custody, parenting time, and even child support issues. To schedule your free 30 minute phone consultation, call the Liebmann Law Office at 952-882-1227.