How To File a Petition to Establish Paternity

Petitions to ascertain the paternity of a child may be filed by either the father or the mother of the child. This is important in cases where there are decisions to be made such as child support or visitation rights of one of the parents. The petition must be filed in your local family court. If you need to know the paternity of your child, the steps are quite simple. Follow the steps below so that you can easily file a petition to establish paternity.

Here are the steps that you have to follow in order for you to file a petition to establish the paternity of your child:

  • Visit family court. Go online and research on your family court. You can visit the family court or you may get the needed forms online if they are available. The forms that you will need to file a petition to establish paternity include the Petition to Establish Parental Relationship, Summons, Declaration Under Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act and the Family Law Certificate Assignment. You can also check your local family court website to see what other documents or forms you need for this.
  • Determine type of testing that you need. The next step is to know what type of paternity testing you need. If you need genetic type testing, you may need a different form for the petition of paternity. You can get this form in family court, too.
  • Wait for response. Wait for the response of the other party. When they respond, set a date and time for the hearing as soon as possible. In some instances, the other party does not respond to the petition. If this happens, you need to wait a total of 30 days. After the 30 days is up, a default can be filed.
  • During the hearing. Prepare all the necessary documents that will support your filing for petition. Be prepared for the different verdicts in court. After the hearing, the judge will assist you and the other party in order to set up a parenting plan that will be of the benefit of the child and that will work with the parents.

These are the steps that you have to follow if you want to file a petition to establish paternity. If you follow these steps and fill out the necessary files that you need, you will go through the process without any problems. It is best to research on the procedures for your local family court so that you can go through the process smoothly.

When you are filing for a petition, it is important that you keep records of all the forms that you have filed in court. This is useful for documentation purposes if ever there are problems that arise in the future. To make the process easier for you, you can also consult or work with a lawyer from your state so that you can easily understand the laws and your rights regarding your issue.


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