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 Tampa 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
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:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
Our firm acknowledges clients concerns about paying for an attorney. We keep hourly fees reasonable for the average suburban family.
Our firm is conveniently located in a suburban first-floor office building with easy-access parking, less than 5 minutes from i-75.
Our clients always come first. We take the time to get to know you and understand your case. We're always available when you need us most.
We consider both legal and practical solutions that will help you achieve your goals.
Our goal was to create a law firm that you can relate to, one that is convenient to your home and easy to communicate with.
We understand you need answers - we prioritize your needs and keep you up to date with your case every step of the way.