Are you legally the father if you aren’t married to the mom? Most fathers don’t realize that if they are not married to the mother of their child, they have no legal rights as a parent. (Yet.)
Do I Need A Paternity Test To Have Child Custody Rights?
A married man is generally assumed to be the father. For an unmarried father, it can be proven through DNA testing or demonstrated through the existence of a Paternity Affidavit.
Paternity is established in one of two ways:
You signed a paternity affidavit at the time of birth.
The existence of a Paternity Affidavit can presume paternity often presented to the father at the hospital at the time of the child’s birth.
You Take a DNA Test
With the advent of DNA testing, a court can now establish parentage in a quick and easy procedure. The father can either submit to a test, or a court order can be obtained to compel the father to take the test. Today’s DNA test results are accurate and nearly indisputable proof of parentage.
On the flip side:
A married man is the legally presumed father when a child is conceived during the marriage, even if he may not child’s biological faththee child. This presumption may be rebutted by DNA testing. However, most courts require that an attempt to disprove paternity be initiated within a reasonable period of time after the birth of the child.