Tampa Paternity Attorney
It is important for children in Florida to have a legal father for a wide variety of reasons. In order for a father to have the rights and responsibilities of a parent under Florida law, it may be necessary to establish paternity. This process is also known as the “determination of parentage” under Florida law. There are multiple reasons that a party might seek to establish paternity, from a father who wants to have child custody and time-sharing to a mother who needs to seek child support and to enforce a child support order. In some cases, a child might want to establish paternity for their own reasons, including having a better understanding of their familial history or to understand certain genetics or health issues that the child may need to consider in the future.
When you have questions about establishing paternity or need assistance moving forward with a determination of parentage process in Florida, a lawyer at The Law Office of Laura A. Olson, P.A. can help. Contact our experienced Tampa paternity attorney for more information.
Ways to Establish Paternity in Tampa
There are many ways to establish paternity in Florida, and in some circumstances it may not be necessary to move forward with a petition for the determination of parentage. The following are ways that you can establish paternity under Florida law:
- If the parents are married at the time of childbirth, paternity is established and there is no need to take any additional steps to establish paternity;
- If the parents are unmarried at the time of childbirth but the presumptive father wants to establish paternity, then that presumptive father can voluntarily establish paternity in the hospital at the time of childbirth;
- If the parents are unmarried and paternity is not established at the time of childbirth but the parents later marry, then paternity can be established when the parents get a marriage license in Florida;
- If paternity has not been established before the child turns 18 but one of the parents wants to establish paternity, they can file a petition with the court and can seek a court order to establish paternity using genetic testing; or
- Child who has already turned 18 can file a petition to establish paternity, typically using genetic testing.
To be clear, the following parties may be able to establish paternity:
- Presumptive father;
- Biological or legal mother; or
In some other circumstances, another party may have standing to file a petition for a determination of parentage, but it is important to seek guidance from a lawyer.
Reasons to Seek a Paternity Determination in Tampa
There are many reasons to establish paternity in Florida, such as:
- Share child custody and time-sharing of the child;
- Seek a child support order;
- Obtain health insurance or other benefits for the child;
- Receive parental support from both parents; and
- Have information about the child’s medical and genetic history.
Helping Tampa Mothers and Fathers Establish Paternity
At The Law Office of Laura A. Olson, P.A., our paternity attorneys help mothers hold the fathers of their children accountable for child support by creating court-ordered paternity testing. We also assist fathers who want visitation and custody rights of their children, and sometimes the only way to ensure that is to perform a paternity test. No matter if you are the mother or the father, we can help. Contact us today at 813-222-0888 to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced Tampa paternity attorneys.