Paternity in Florida

Paternity Doesn’t Establish Rights to the Child

Let’s get one thing clear from the very beginning. Establishing Paternity doesn’t mean that you have rights to your children. It is the first step, not the last step.

Paternity Definition

Paternity is defined as the state of being a father, fatherhood. To state the obvious, we know who the mother is; the child is born from the mother. Paternity need not be established when the child is born of an intact marriage, there is a presumption that a child born during the marriage is a child of the parents. However, for the father’s of a child is born out of wedlock we must establish paternity.

How to Establish Paternity

There are several ways paternity can be established, as a matter of law, and you can find these different ways in Florida Statute 742.10(1):

  1. The Court establishes paternity: If the establishment of paternity has been raised and determined within an adjudicatory hearing (a court hearing) brought under the statutes governing inheritance, or dependency under workers’ compensation or similar compensation programs; this adjudication constitutes an establishment of paternity; or
  2. The parties acknowledge paternity (the mother and father agree) and files with the clerk: If an affidavit acknowledging paternity or a stipulation of paternity is executed by both parties and filed with the clerk of the court; (This affidavit or stipulation constitutes an establishment of paternity); or
  3. The Parties sign the Birth Certificate. If an affidavit, a notarized voluntary acknowledgment of paternity, or a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity that is witnessed by two individuals and signed under penalty of perjury as provided for in s. 382.013 or s. 382.016 is executed by both parties; (This affidavit or acknowledgment constitutes an establishment of paternity) (Section 382.013 states that if the mother is not married at the time of the birth, the name of the father may not be entered on the birth certificate without the execution of an affidavit signed by both the mother and the person to be named as the father.); or
  4. When the Department of Revenue pursues the father: If paternity is adjudicated by the Department of Revenue as provided in s. 409.256. (This adjudication constitutes an establishment of paternity)

Press the Picture Below  for Paternity Notes for Fathers

father kissing Baby

However, establishing paternity is only part of the solution. Generally, the establishment of paternity is a prerequisite to other relief you may be seeking, child support, time-sharing or parental rights. The view from the mother’s side of the case is different from the father’ side of the case. Please see the following for particulars note on each view.

Press the Picture Below for Paternity Notes for Mothers

Five week old baby feet held in mothers hands.

Trust an Experienced Family Law Attorney to Handle Your Paternity and Child Custody Case.

Florida Law on paternity is not easy and has difficult rules and procedures. Do not do it alone. I always offer a free consultation. There is no better way than sitting down face-to-face with me to learn what your rights are and to get what you deserve. If you are reading this I am sure you know someone, a friend or family member, that has a horror story regarding their own experience. That is why you should always consult an attorney that practices Divorces and Family Law and nothing else. Someone like me. I do not practice criminal law or elder law, or many other types of law. I am Florida Divorce and Family Law attorney that understands the laws completely, because I handle family law matters on a regular basis. I will always listen compassionately and attentively to your needs and concerns and provide you with the best advice for your particular case.