Florida refers to any case in which a Mother gave birth to a child at a time in which she was not married to the child’s Father as a “paternity” case. Florida law requires that paternity be legally established before any rights are given to the Father. Once paternity is established then the Father may have rights and responsibilities to the child such as timesharing and child support.
Legal Considerations in Paternity Matters in Florida
There are a number of legal issues that arise when a child is born to parents who are not married. At Beaulieu-Fawcett | Newell Law Group, P.A., our Delray Beach paternity attorneys have expertise and experience in representing mothers and fathers in this situation and handling all legal issues that such actions entail.
For instance, prior to legitimation of a child born out of wedlock, the mother is entitled to custody of the child, and she exercises all parental power over the child. The father may seek custody and/or visitation of the child through a legitimation suit. In such cases, the court can declare the child legitimate, specify the child’s name, and order the child and father capable of inheriting from each other.
The mother may obtain child support from the father through a paternity suit. Upon a finding or acknowledgment that the alleged father is the biological father of the child, the court may issue an order designating him as the father of the child and imposing a child support obligation upon him.
What are the Benefits of Establishing Paternity?
Establishing paternity, which is the legal recognition of a man as the father of a child, can have various benefits for the child, the father, and sometimes the mother. Here are some of the key advantages:
- Child Support: Once paternity is established, the non-custodial parent (often the father) may be required to provide financial support for the child. This helps ensure that the child's basic needs are met.
- Inheritance Rights: The child may have the right to inherit from the father and vice versa. This can be important in situations involving family wealth or assets.
- Access to Medical History: Knowing the father's medical history can be crucial for the child's healthcare. It provides a more complete picture of the child's genetic background, which can be important for diagnosing and treating medical conditions.
- Identity and Connection: Establishing paternity can contribute to the child's sense of identity and connection. Knowing both biological parents can be important for a child's emotional well-being and can help answer questions about their origins.
- Family Relationships: It can open the door to building a relationship between the child and the extended family on the father's side.
- Access to Benefits: Some benefits, such as Social Security, veteran's benefits, and life insurance, may be available to the child through the father. Establishing paternity ensures that the child can access these benefits.
- Legal Protections: A paternity establishment can provide legal protection for the child in terms of visitation rights, custody arrangements, and other matters related to the child's well-being.
Beaulieu-Fawcett | Newell Law Group Can Help
Schedule your free case assessment by calling our Delray Beach paternity attorneys at (561) 600-5711. We are here to guide you through these complex processes.
Contact us today if you have questions about establishing paternity in Florida.
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