Parents are often surprised to learn that adding a parent to the birth certificate and maintaining the father’s last name does not mean he has legal rights to the child in the State of Florida for an unmarried couple. When the mother is married and births a child, there is a presumption of paternity, but if the couple is not married, then paternity must be established through a court order.
Paternity law represents the structure of the underlying relationship between a father and his child and looks over the rights and duties of both the father and his child towards each other and to the other related people. A child’s paternity may be important in relation to the matters of legitimacy, inheritance and the rights to the putative father’s title or the surname, and also the biological father’s rights to timesharing in the situation of separation with the mother, or divorce and obligations of child support.
A paternity suit can be brought by the child’s Mother, the Father, the Department of Child Support Services in Florida, or the Child’s Legal Representative. If you believe you need to file a paternity action, or have questions about your case, call Geiger Law today.