Paternity Frequently Asked Questions | Mindi Lasley, P.A.

Paternity Frequently Asked Questions

Paternity can be a sensitive issue, but it’s important you understand the facts surrounding the legal establishment of paternity and why it is a crucial component of many cases. Here’s what you need to know.

1. Can Paternity Be Assumed?

Paternity is only assumed in cases of a married couple. It is not necessary to legally establish paternity when a married couple gets a divorce in order for the father of the child to have rights to custody and/or visitation. However, in order to legally prove that a husband is not the father of a child born to a married couple, paternity testing is required.

2. When Is Paternity Testing Necessary?

If an unmarried couple is separating and the father wishes to have legal rights to the child, he must establish legal paternity. The same goes if a child’s mother wishes to obtain child support from the father of the child that she is not married to. Either way, legally valid proof of paternity must be provided to the court before child support or visitation will be awarded.

3. Are There Other Reasons Why Establishing Paternity Is Important?

Knowing a child’s family medical history is important. Establishing paternity will help determine whether a child has a family history of heart conditions, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, and other potentially significant medical issues. Also, a child cannot receive benefits from a father unless he has been legally established as such — for example, a child will not be able to receive Social Security Disability benefits, Veteran’s benefits, or an inheritance without legal documentation of paternity. Additionally, legal documentation of paternity allows a father to place a child on his health insurance, which may provide better benefits than the mother’s health insurance.

4. Should Fathers Under the Age of 18 Be Concerned with Paternity?

If a man under the age of 18 has conceived a child with a woman, he will be held responsible, in part, both legally and financially for the child. When paternity is established, he can obtain visitation rights or will be ordered to pay child support, just as a man over the age of 18 would be. If a young man suspects that he is not the father of a child, legal paternity testing should always be done to confirm or deny parentage.

Contact Mindi Lasley, P.A. Today

If you have questions about paternity or need to obtain legal paternity testing that is admissible in a Florida court of law, don’t hesitate to reach out to an experienced attorney. Contact Mindi Lasley, P.A. today for more information at (813) 873-9047.

What Is Florida Palimony?

What Is Florida Palimony?

Palimony: What Is It?  You’ve heard of alimony -- payments made from the higher-earning spouse to the lesser earning spouse during and after a divorce for a period of time decided by either the couple or a judge. But do you know about palimony? Here’s what unmarried...

Can I Get Reasonable Visitation with My Child?

Can I Get Reasonable Visitation with My Child?

Custodial Parent When a child’s parents separate, they will typically live with one of their parents most of the time. This parent is called the custodial parent, and the other is referred to as the noncustodial parent. If the child is old enough, they may choose with...

Do I Have Other Options Besides Divorce?

Do I Have Other Options Besides Divorce?

Your marriage is in trouble and you’re thinking about divorce.    Is that really the next best step? Divorce is time consuming, complex, and costly. You may benefit from exploring divorce alternatives, such as legal separation or mediation. Here’s what you need...

Florida Divorce Laws Explained

Florida Divorce Laws Explained

Understanding Florida Divorce Law If you are going through a separation in Florida and think that divorce proceedings will be necessary, then you will want to ensure that you have a full understanding of the process so that it goes as smoothly as possible. Florida...