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Paternity Lawyers in Tampa

Helping Clients Establish Legal Fatherhood of Their Child

Society and culture continues to grow and evolve, including our definition of family. When a husband and wife have a child during their marriage, the law states that the husband is the father of the child. But, what about unmarried couples? Typically, determining the mother is fairly obvious. However, establishing the father, in a legal sense, can be a bit more complex. Being named the father of your child is important, not only emotionally, but from a legal standpoint as well. Beyond financial obligations to a child and their mother, establishing paternity is necessary in probate matters and worker’s compensation issues. Our Wesley Chapel paternity lawyers will guide you through this legal process to ensure the father is successfully established in the eyes of the law.

Call our office at (813) 773-8233 to schedule your initial consultation today.

How to Legally Establish the Father of a Child in Wesley Chapel

There are a number of different ways to establish paternity and the mechanism that is best for you will depend on each person’s particular situation.

The ways to establish paternity include:

  1. Marriage: As stated above, if a husband and wife have a child during their marriage the husband is presumed to be the father of that child. Furthermore, if the mother and believed father marry sometime during the child’s life, the child is treated to have been born during that marriage.
  2. Affidavit or acknowledgment: If both the mother and supposed father sign an affidavit, or a voluntary acknowledgment (either notarized or signed in front of two witnesses) of paternity, the supposed father becomes the legal father of the child. If at the time of birth, this may be necessary to have the father’s name on the original birth certificate if the parents are unmarried at the time of the child’s birth. Often the hospital will provide the affidavit and the birth certificate simultaneously at the time of birth.
  3. Department of Revenue: The Department of Revenue may also commence an administrative determination of paternity to begin child support obligations.

Court Proceedings: The mother, child, or party who suspects he may be the father of a child may bring proceedings to determine the paternity of a child. If such a proceeding is commenced, the court may require genetic testing of the mother, suspected father, and the child. If there is a 95% probability of the supposed father being the biological father, that man is presumed to be the father of the child. This presumption may be overcome, but it is very difficult. If there is less than a 95% probability that the supposed father is the biological father, the court will look at the totality of the circumstances and other evidence presented before declaring the paternity of the child. In that case, the court still may order that the supposed father is the legal father.

Here to Help You Resolve Your Legal Issues

At Devolder Law Firm our Tampa paternity lawyers can help you navigate the legal complexities of establishing the father of a child. We will work closely with you to determine which course would work best for your situation and ensure you obtain a positive outcome.

Complete our online contact form or call the office directly at (813) 773-8233 for sound and compassionate legal representation.

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