Houston Paternity Lawyers Work to Establish Legal Fatherhood
Reliable Texas family law attorneys discuss relevant legal standards
When a child is born to parents who are not married to each other establishing legal paternity is very important. Men without legal fatherhood status might not be able to spend time with their son or daughter. Mothers seeking child support need a paternity determination to take legal action. From offices in Houston and Brenham, Anne E. Kennedy, Attorney at Law advises Texas residents on the laws relating to paternity and represents them in proceedings when a dispute exist over who is the father of particular child.
Texas firm advises on custody and child support issues related to paternity
Throughout the Houston area, we counsel clients on various aspects of legal paternity in Texas, such as:
- Voluntary paternity — When parents of a newborn child are married, the husband of the mother is usually listed as the baby’s father on the birth certificate. When an unmarried mother and a man agree that he is the father, the parties can execute an Acknowledgement of Paternity, which gives the man legal parentage.
- Genetic testing — To start the legal process, a mother, possible father, child or the state can submit a Petition to Adjudicate Parentage to the court. Typically, disagreements over paternity are resolved through genetic testing conducted by swabbing the cheeks of the mother, the potential father and the child.
- Benefits — Once paternity is established, the child can be covered under the father’s health insurance and might also have access to other benefits. For example, the youth could get discounted tuition at a school where the father works.
- Child custody — Unless a man is designated as the legal father of a boy or girl, he is unlikely to gain child custody or visitation rights over a mother’s objection. Our firm is committed to helping men take the legal steps they need to build and maintain a strong relationship with their child. After paternity is confirmed, we can also advise fathers on issues related to conservatorship, access and possession.
- Child support — Regardless of whether parents were ever married or not, a father who no longer lives with his child is legally required to provide child support payments. If you are a mother who is entitled to receive financial help to pay for your child’s living expenses, we will guide you through the necessary paternity and child support proceedings.
Dealing with paternity issues might seem uncomfortable, but every child deserves the love and support of two parents, so it’s important to act promptly if fatherhood is not legally settled. We are seasoned family law attorneys who treat each of these cases with the utmost professionalism and sensitivity.
Contact a Houston attorney for a free consultation concerning a paternity issue
Anne E. Kennedy, Attorney at Law represents Texas clients in proceedings related to legal paternity. Please call 713-862-8110 or contact us online for a free initial consultation about your legal options. We have offices in The Heights section of Houston and in Brenham.