Paternity in Florida and Why it Matters
Across the country, over 40 percent of all childbirths are to unmarried women. With this rising trend, paternity is increasingly becoming something that needs to be established following the birth of a child. In the state of Florida, if a married woman gives birth the law automatically grants paternity to the woman’s husband, however, this is more complicated if the woman is not married. In the event that the mother is unmarried then paternity must be established once the child is born. If you are going through this process and wondering the most efficient way you can establish paternity, it is best that you speak with an experienced Florida family law attorney.
Benefits of Establishing Paternity
Establishing paternity can be beneficial for the mother and the child. If the child’s parents are not married then paternity can be established through court order or voluntarily. In the event that the mother and father agree on the paternity, then they can sign a Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity form. This document grants the father paternity and requires the father and mother to swear under oath that the information provided is valid. Once sixty days have passed from the signing of this form the document cannot be revoked. Alternatively, if there is not a voluntary agreement on the paternity of the child, then the parents must go to Florida circuit court in order to establish paternity.
There are many benefits to establishing paternity in the state of Florida, however, these are the most notable:
- Access to Medical Information: Paternity places the father’s name on the child’s birth certificate. This will allow the father to access the child’s medical records without having to jump any legal hurdles.
- Financial Help: Establishing paternity can be extremely beneficial for the mother and the child. Raising a child in a single-parent home can be difficult and financially straining. However, if you are able to establish paternity then the father will be legally obligated to provide financial support to the raising of the child. This ensures that the father is held responsible for the life he helped create. The only way the parents are not financially responsible for the child is if they give the child up for adoption.
- Insurance Benefits: In order for a man to put their child on their life insurance or health insurance the man must be listed as the child’s father.
Contact Us for Professional Assistance
If you are trying to establish paternity or are trying to dispute paternity, your best option is to speak with a knowledgeable family law attorney. Your attorney will be able to review your situation and identify the best course of action for your case. At the office of Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. we understand the complexities of the Florida paternity process and are ready to advocate on your behalf as you seek paternity. If you are fighting for paternity, call us today at 954-945-7591 to find out how our dedicated team of Fort Lauderdale paternity attorneys can help protect your parental rights and the best interests of your child.