Paternity At Sagaria Law, P.C., we are familiar with the legal issues that are at stake when establishing paternity, and we are ready to help you.

Establishing paternity involves determining who is the father of a child. The law always recognizes the mother of the child as a parent. But if the mother and father were not married when the child was born, then the law only recognizes the father if paternity is legal established. Paternity gives your child the same benefits and rights as those children born to parents who are married. These include:

  • Legal proof of of both the father's and mother's identities.
  • Family medical history information, in case of inherited health problems.
  • The father's name on the birth certificate.
  • Life or medical insurance from either parent (if they have insurance).
  • Financial support from each parent.

Whether or not a child's parents are legally together at the time of birth, they can sign a Voluntary Declaration of Paternity to legally determine the identity of the child's father. If the parents are in disagreement about the identity of the father, any man who believes he may be a child's biological father is entitled, under California law, to a DNA paternity test (by blood or saliva) to legally prove his identity. If the child and the possible father live in different cities, they can each take their tests in separate locations. For example, if the man who thinks he is a child's father lives in Dublin and the child lives in Carmel, the possible father may take his test in Alameda County while the child can be tested in Monterey County.

Establishing paternity will be very important for a child if his or her parents become separated, divorced, or were never married—especially if the child's father wants to ensure that he has custody and visitation rights. It also allows the child to be legally entitled to receive child support and gives a father the right to make certain legal decisions regarding his child. In California, there is no statute of limitations for establishing paternity.

A child's parents may also want to establish paternity in the event that there is a disagreement over the father's identity. A person may deny that he is the child's father, and filing a paternity lawsuit can resolve this dispute, ensure that the child's rights are taken care of, and require the child's father to meet his financial and legal obligations to the child. Should the case go to trial, a California Superior Court will hear the case.

Should you decide to go through the courts to establish paternity, you will have to file a Complaint to Establish Parental Relationship. A Judgment, reached either by agreement between both parties, by default, or after the trial, will be issued by the court.

Whether you are the child's biological mother or father, and you wish to establish paternity, an attorney can legally represent you and help you understand the different issues that may be involved. Sagaria Law, P.C. has years of experience successfully representing clients in Santa Clara County, Alameda County, Monterey County, San Mateo County, and Sacramento County in paternity-related matters, and we can help you and your child receive the benefits that you are entitled to by establishing paternity. We can also help you work out child support payments, a suitable visitation plan, and create fair and proper custody arrangements.