Legitimation & Paternity
Macon Legitimation & Paternity Lawyer
Serving Parents in Macon, Warner Robins & Central Georgia
Legitimation and paternity are the terms used in cases where the unmarried parents of a child seek to make a legal determination regarding the father’s parentage through court action. In the case of unmarried mothers, conclusively establishing the identity of the child’s biological father is usually the first step in seeking child support. On the other hand, unmarried fathers lacking an existing relationship with the mother must go through paternity actions to establish themselves as the biological father of the child to gain custody or visitation rights.
Whether you are an unmarried parent seeking child support or child custody rights, you can turn to The Law Office of Kyle Krejci for the help you need. With over a decade of experience in resolving all types of family law matters in and around Macon, Kyle has the knowledge, skills, and resources you need. He brings a personalized approach to your case to thoroughly understand your individual circumstances, needs, and goals and is known throughout the area for the high quality of his representation.
While legitimation and paternity both deal with the issue of parentage, they have distinctions. Through the paternity process, a man can be established as a child’s biological father. However, this alone does not give him rights of access or decision-making ability for the child. Legitimation does that by establishing a legal relationship between the father and the child through the courts.
Thus, a paternity case can lead to a mother being able to file for child support through the courts while legitimation allows a father to seek parental rights to custody and visitation. This allows him to participate in the child’s life and/or have the authority to make major decisions about the child’s education, healthcare, and other important aspects of life.
When a child is born to unmarried parents, the father does not have any automatic parental rights. The mother does not have any rights to child support either unless she proves through court action that he is the child’s father. In Georgia, both parents are obligated to support their children whether married, divorced, or never married.
Unmarried parents can establish the father’s parentage by both of them signing a Voluntary Paternity Acknowledgement Form when the child is born. This is usually done at the hospital.
Lacking the above Form, paternity can now be established through a simple DNA process. Once established, either parent can then seek further parental rights and obligations through child support and custody petitions.
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