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Establishing Paternity in California

Westlake Village Family Law Attorney Representing Fathers

Paternity testDetermining the identity of a child's biological father can be beneficial to all parties involved. Paternity issues can be addressed with the assistance of an understanding Westlake Village family law lawyer from Debra J. Kay Attorney at Law. At our firm, we know that establishing paternity is important and we can help you establish who the father is as quickly as possible so that you can move forward with your life or potentially pursue child support.

The following resources can be useful to understand paternity issues:

Our lead lawyer, Debra J. Kay, is a certified family law specialist who can provide you and your family with the resolution that you are seeking for your case. No matter the paternity issue, Debra J. Kay Attorney at Law can help. Our family law lawyers in Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, and Ventura County can provide the information and guidance you need.

How is Paternity Established in California?

In the state of California, there are two ways to establish paternity.

  • Declaration of Paternity - this is voluntary and is usually signed by both parents at the hospital shortly after their child has been born. A properly signed declaration of paternity has the same effect as a court order establishing parental relationship for the child, without anyone having to go to court.
  • Court Order - this is filed when there are disagreements about paternity and the mother isn't sure that the man is the biological father. A DNA test may be needed, as well as a court hearing.

How Long Does a Father Have to Establish Paternity in California?

If the parents of the child were married at the time of their child's birth, then the court will assume that the husband is the biological father. If paternity is being challenged, the father has two years from the time of birth to do so.

Reasons to Complete a Paternity Test

There are a few reasons someone may request a paternity test be completed. For fathers, establishing paternity means that you would be able to have visitation rights with your child, and custody agreements could be altered. Determining that you fathered the child in question would enforce your parental rights and access to the child.

Mothers looking to establish paternity on their child's birth certificate may be able to hold the biological father of the child accountable for child support. Some parents wish to have both of their names made known on their child's birth certificate so that the child can be entitled to inheritance in the future.

DNA Testing

There a few ways that a DNA test can be administered to prove paternity. The most common form of genetic testing is the mouth swab, for which a DNA sample is collected from the cheek of the alleged father and the child. These tests can be given voluntarily or requested by a court to stand as evidence in family law cases.

Call a Westlake Village & Thousand Oaks Divorce Lawyer

If you are facing a parental dispute and are in need of a family law attorney in Westlake Village, Ventura County, or the surrounding communities, do not hesitate to contact Debra J. Kay Attorney at Law right away. Our firm has 26 years of experience in offering outstanding representation to clients, and we may be able to assist you as well. Contact our firm today to schedule case evaluation with a trusted Westlake Village divorce lawyer now.

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The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

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Debra J. Kay Attorney at Law - Westlake Village Divorce Attorney
Located at 2801 Townsgate Rd, #360 Westlake Village, CA 91361. View Map
Phone: (805) 416-0212 | Fax: (805) 379-2228
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