Lawrenceville Paternity Lawyer: Your Parental Rights

There are several reasons why the issue of paternity might come up. If a child was born to parents who were not married, and one or both parents is trying to legally determine parental rights and obligations, then paternity will need to be established first. The process to determine this is called legitimation. Or a mother may be seeking child support from the person she alleges is the father, or may want to bring charges against the alleged father for not providing support. A man whose paternity is in question and has not completed a legitimation action really has no rights at all in the eyes of the law. These and other reasons are why you should contact a Lawrenceville divorce lawyer to effectively advise and guide you through the legal process.

Father's Rights

The main method of determining paternity is through blood or DNA testing. DNA testing is the most accurate. No longer is there the chance that a judge might erroneously make a decision regarding whether someone is the father or not due to this testing. Once paternity is established, the father will be able to petition for legal or physical custody of the child. He can also be granted visitation rights if he doesn't already have joint physical custody. If you, the father, are seeking child support, you can now proceed with that process. And as the legitimate father, you are able to protest any proceedings regarding the potential adoption of your child.

Sometimes, paternity has been falsely adjudicated, perhaps due to errors in testing. The courts may have already decided on the particulars of child support, and the alleged father may have been paying that child support. But if new testing can show that the earlier results were incorrect, then filing a motion can set the paternity and child support determinations aside. The motion must be filed within 90 days of the newest DNA testing, and it must show that there is no probability (0%) that the person is the biological father. This action can even have the effect of stopping efforts to collect past due support payments. There is a caution here, though. Asking the court to set aside a paternity and child support award can only be done if the issue had not previously been concluded even though questions remained about paternity. This is a simplified explanation of this provision, and there can be many exceptions. A qualified attorney who handles paternity issues should be consulted to ensure it is dealt with expertly.

Mother's Rights

There can also be the circumstance where a mother does not want the father to have any rights; perhaps he's been abusive in the relationship. Or maybe the father has been negligent in paying child support, or is not carrying out the responsibilities he should be. The law office of Fox Firm, P.C. also represents mothers who need help in fighting to deny the father's rights. Again, the first step would be to establish paternity.

Lawrenceville Paternity Lawyer Serving all of Gwinnett County

There are many issues surrounding paternity, and often they can be complex. Emotions can run high where relationships and especially children are involved. Decisions regarding paternity can affect a person, and the family, for a lifetime. You should consult an experienced Lawrenceville divorce lawyer who is knowledgeable in paternity issues. The office of Fox Firm, P.C. is ready to assist you, whether you are attempting to prove or disprove paternity. They have the expertise to arrange DNA testing and to competently present the case in court. They will effectively fight for your rights and the best outcome possible for you.