Paternity Attorneys in Arizona
Arizona Paternity Lawyer
Establishing legal fatherhood and the rights and duties that accompany it is known as paternity. There can be a difference between a biological father and a legal father. When a child is born, the mother’s name automatically appears on the birth certificate. If she is married, her husband is assumed to be the baby’s father. If the parents are not married, it is important for the mother, for the father, and above all for the child, to establish paternity.
Our Arizona paternity lawyers assist both women and men in a broad range of paternity matters, including filing paternity lawsuits and defending against paternity actions. With law offices in Arizona, we represent clients in Tucson, Mesa, Chandler, Glendale Grove and throughout the Phoenix metropolitan area.
Arizona Paternity FAQs
In general, the parents have two years from the date of the child’s birth to bring a paternity claim. Exceptions do apply, so you should still talk to a family law attorney to see your chances of success if you have passed that time frame. Both parents may also agree to waive that deadline.
There are a few ways to legally determine who is the father of a child in Arizona. First, the father of the child may sign the birth certificate when the child is born. The father may also sign an Acknowledgment of Paternity to establish the child’s parenthood after the childbirth. Fatherhood will also be presumed if the child was born within 10 months of the man being married to the mother. Lastly, paternity can be established through genetic testing.
If you haven’t established paternity of a child, it is unlikely that you have full, if any, custody of the child. It is extremely likely you will need to start paying child support once paternity is established. A child has the right to adequate financial support from both parents.
An acknowledged father is one who has stated that he is the father of the child, whether by signing the birth certificate or an Acknowledgment of Paternity. A presumed father meets legal guidelines for the court to assume he is the father of the child without admitting it.
This will depend on the exact circumstances of the case. Sometimes the parent requesting the DNA testing will be responsible for payment, and some courts require the father to pay if the paternity test is a match. The government may pay for the testing, especially in cases where one or both parents receive financial assistance. If the parents choose to get the testing done through a private lab, they will both be responsible for the testing fees.
You may contest the allegations when the alleged mother brings a suit against you. If you want to fight the paternity claim, you shouldn’t sign any documents or agreements without speaking to an attorney. An experienced family law attorney should also be able to guide you through the paternity contesting process. Having a genetic test may also prove that you’re not the father of the child.
AZ Family Law Lawyer Service Areas:
Establishing a Child’s Rights, Finding the Truth
Do you need to verify whether a child is yours? Do you currently have a child with someone you are not married? Did you sign a Recognition of Parentage (ROP) at your child’s birth but don’t understand what that means? Our experienced paternity lawyers can answer all of your questions regarding paternity and child rights in Arizona.
When a child is in a “non-traditional” situation, many questions can pop up, including: If you are the father of a child, do you want to become involved with the parenting of that child? What are your rights as a Father? If you are the mother, what kind of parenting time and custody arrangement do you want the father to have? What exactly are your rights as a Mother? If you are the grandparents, how do you stay connected with your grandchild? What are your rights as a grandparent?