Paternity can often be a sensitive subject for a family. Whether a parent seeks to prove the biological father of her child or a father suspects he is not biologically linked to a child, there are many reasons why a person may want to perform a paternity test. If you or a family member need assistance with establishing paternity, you should consult with an experienced Maryland paternity attorney as soon as possible.
The Law Offices of Randolph Rice could help you resolve any paternity matters you are facing. We know that determining paternity for a child could be a difficult experience, and we are here to provide you with the legal representation that you deserve. Our firm has worked on a variety of family law issues, and we would be proud to work with you. To schedule a free legal consultation to discuss your paternity case, contact the Law Offices of Randolph Rice at (410) 694-7291. You may also schedule your free legal consultation online.
Benefits of Paternity Proceedings in Maryland
The establishment of paternity is a process by which the court will determine a father’s relationship to a child. A proceeding for paternity may be initiated for a number of reasons. For example, a mother may want to show that a person has fathered a child in order to seek child support from the father. Alternatively, a person may seek to establish paternity if they believe their child has been hidden from them.
There are many benefits to establish paternity, whether a mother or a father is seeking a paternity action. For example, establishing paternity will allow a child to have a relationship with their father. Additionally, a child and a family as a whole can also enjoy the following benefits of a paternity claim:
- Allows a father’s name to be placed on the birth certificate
- Makes it easier for a father to request custody of a child or visitation rights
- Permits a father to make a decision regarding the adoption of their child
- Allows a child to claim benefits on behalf of their father, such as healthcare and inheritance
- Helps the child understand the medical history of the father for treatment purposes
There are a variety of other reasons that you may want to consider a paternity action. The Law Offices of Randolph Rice is here to discuss how pursuing a paternity action can help you. If you wish to know more about filing a paternity action in Maryland, you should consult with an experienced Maryland paternity lawyer today.
How Do I Establish Paternity in Maryland?
If you wish to pursue a paternity action in Maryland, you should be aware that there are three ways that paternity can be established: marital presumption, an Affidavit of Parentage, or judicial declaration.
Under the rules of marital presumption, if a mother is married when a child was conceived or birthed, the law will presume that the husband is the father of the child. However, if the husband suspects that they are not the father of the child, they could challenge it by way of a paternity action.
For a husband to prove they are not the father of a child, they must provide sufficient evidence that defeats the rebuttable presumption that they are biologically linked to the child. For example, the husband could perform a DNA test to ascertain their relationship to the child.
Affidavit of Parentage
When the mother of the child is unmarried, it is possible to establish paternity by signing an Affidavit of Parentage. An Affidavit of Parentage is a legal document that each parent has the discretion to sign at the time of the birth of a child. The Affidavit of Parentage can be signed by the father, whether they are married to another person and even if the father is under the age of 18.
Normally, the Affidavit of Parentage would be signed by the parents at the birth of the child. However, if you are uncertain about whether you should sign the document, you can take the document home to consider the decision. If you are unsure about whether you should sign the document, you may want to consider consulting an experienced paternity attorney.
In some cases, you may be able to rescind the Affidavit of Parentage for a valid cause. For example, if the mother of the child lied about the identity of the father, this may be a valid ground to rescind the affidavit.
Paternity can also be established by judicial declaration. Specifically, the court can order genetic testing of the father, or the court can have the father swear under oath. When swearing under oath, the mother can choose to dispute the affirmation of paternity by the father.
Whether you need help proving paternity or disestablishing paternity, our firm is here to help you through this difficult time.
Work with Our Experienced Maryland Paternity Lawyer to Discuss Your Case
If you or a family member need assistance to manage a paternity case, contact an experienced Maryland paternity lawyer today. The legal team at the Law Offices of Randolph Rice years of experience, and we are prepared to help you resolve your paternity matter. You do not have to handle your paternity case alone. To schedule a free case evaluation with our Maryland family law attorney to discuss your paternity case, contact the Law Offices of Randolph Rice at (410) 694-7291. You may also contact the firm online to schedule your free evaluation.