San Jose Paternity Lawyer
Seabrook Law Offices helps mothers and fathers establish paternity.
Paternity In San Jose
The state of California assumes parentage when a child is born to married parents. In this instance, the mother and father are both assumed to be the biological parents and listed on the birth certificate. However, it can get complicated when children are born outside of marriage. In this case, you might need to establish paternity to obtain parental rights or collect support. Additionally, establishing paternity is often a necessary component of building a bond with the child.
Our San Jose paternity lawyer helps both mothers and fathers go through the legal process of establishing paternity. Sometimes, it’s as simple as signing a declaration of paternity, but other times, the case has to go to court. Contact us today to discuss your options moving forward.
Reasons to Establish Paternity
Mothers and fathers establish paternity for a number of reasons. These reasons include:
- Setting up child support and visitation/custody schedules
- Allowing the child to get on the parent’s health insurance
- Ensuring the child has inheritance rights
- Allowing the child to receive veteran’s benefits, social security benefits, and more, if applicable
- Solidifying the father-child relationship
- Accessing the father’s medical history
How To Establish Paternity
If both parties agree on paternity, you can establish it by signing a Voluntary Declaration of Paternity. You and the other party must both sign it for it to be valid in the eyes of the law. If the father is not listed on the birth certificate, he can be added once both people sign the form. Additionally, the couple can work out child custody and support orders or take the case to family court.
If the parties don’t agree, your San Jose paternity lawyer can help you establish it through court proceedings. The mother or presumed father can request genetic testing to confirm parentage. If the mother makes the request and the presumed father refuses to cooperate, the court can rule that he is the father. Consult with a San Jose paternity lawyer to go over your legal rights and next steps.
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DNA Testing For Paternity
If you request a DNA test to establish paternity, you’ll likely undergo a saliva test. A saliva sample will be collected from your mouth via a cotton swab. The child will also have to provide a specimen for testing.
You might get tested at the Department of Child Support Services. If not, you’ll use a private testing company. Go over your testing options with your San Jose paternity lawyer ahead of time. Then, your attorney can ensure that the testing facility complies with the demands in the court order. Otherwise, the test won’t be admissible, meaning you’ll have to start the process again. Since private testing companies sometimes charge hundreds of dollars for a single test, you don’t want to have to repeat it.
Statute Of Limitations For Establishing Paternity
Unfortunately, there is a statute of limitations in place for establishing paternity in California. You must do so within three years of the date your child turns 18. Additionally, if you have doubts about paternity for a child born while you’re married, you must establish parentage within two years of the birth. If you wait until the statute of limitations expires, you cannot take legal action for paternity. Because the clock is ticking, contact a San Jose paternity lawyer as soon as you wish to move forward.
Reasons To Hire A San Jose Paternity Lawyer
Your San Jose paternity lawyer can help you file the paperwork needed to establish parentage. Then, your attorney can stay on the case and help you create a parenting plan and child support agreement. We advocate for children and will provide assistance to ensure your child’s interests are met, from establishing paternity all the way to dividing parenting time and determining support payments.
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