Establishing Your Florida Paternity Rights Through the Court
Posted By O. Kim Byrd || Mar 28, 2011
If you are the father of a child born to a woman to whom you were not married, you should retain an expert St. Petersburg paternity attorney to establish your paternity through a legal action filed with the court. Being listed as the parent on your child's birth certificate is not enough. Being listed on the birth certificate establishes your legal relationship to the child for certain purposes such as the child's right to inherit from you, but it doesn't establish your right to timesharing with your child. It establishes your obligation to financially support your child, but it doesn't establish the specific amount of that support.
If you are not proactive, the state of Florida may become involved in establishing the specific amount of Florida child support. This happens when the mother of your child seeks state financial assistance or assistance in getting child support. If this happens, the court will only establish the amount of child support that you owe. It is important for you to retain an attorney during this process to be certain that the amount of support is calculated correctly using accurate income information for both you and the mother and giving you the appropriate credit toward back child support. This action by the state of Florida will not result in your having timesharing with your child. If you want to establish timesharing with your child, you will need to file a separate action with the court. As with all court actions, it is advisable that you retain an attorney to represent you.
If you are proactive and file the action with the court before the state of Florida becomes involved, you can have your timesharing and the amount of child support determined in one legal action. This will save you time and a great deal of money. So be proactive. Contact a Florida paternity attorney to establish your parental rights.