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Wakenight & Associates, P.C.

9405 Bormet Drive, Suite 7, Mokena, IL 60448

Mokena | 815-727-6144

DuPage County | 630-852-9700   Oak Park | 708-848-3159

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Establishing Paternity: It is More Important Than You Might Think

 Posted on April 24, 2019 in Family Law

Mokena family law attorney child paternityThe only time the legal father of a child is presumed in Illinois is when the mother is married when the child is born or within 300 days before the child is born. In these cases, the man the mother was married to is presumed to be the legal father of the child. If the mother was unmarried at the time the child was born or within 300 days before the child was born, then it is her responsibility to establish the paternity of the child. Paternity can be established through a couple of different ways, but it is essential that it is done, especially if the mother is attempting to seek child support from the child’s father. Paternity cases can be confusing, which is why getting legal help is advised in these situations.

Ways of Establishing Paternity

If your child’s paternity is not automatically presumed, then you must go about establishing your child’s paternity through alternate means. There are two other ways you can determine your child’s paternity: through the use of a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity form or by actions taken by a state child support agency or a judge. The easiest way to establish your child’s paternity is to fill out and sign the Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity form while you are at the hospital and have your child’s father do the same.

If your child’s father is unwilling to sign the Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity form, you may have to enlist the help of the courts or Illinois Child Support Services. Either of these processes will require you, your child, and the alleged father to submit to genetic testing before an Order of Paternity can be established.

Benefits of Establishing Paternity

By establishing your child’s paternity, you are opening up a world of rights and opportunities that your child will have. Setting paternity benefits your child by:

  • Reinforcing your child’s right to have a relationship with his or her father and his family
  • Allowing the father’s name to be added to your child’s birth certificate
  • Allowing the father to step in if something happens to you and you are no longer able to care for your child
  • Allowing your child to be added to his or her father’s health insurance plan
  • Allowing your child to have access to his or her father’s medical records, if needed
  • Ensuring your child’s right to child support
  • Allowing your child to be named as a beneficiary to receive his or her father’s Social Security benefits, veteran’s benefits, pension, and inheritance in the event of the father’s death.

Have Questions About the Process? A Will County Family Law Attorney Can Help

The process to establish the paternity of your child can be long and complicated, but it can provide essential benefits for your child once all is said and done. At Wakenight & Associates, P.C., we understand the emotional impact establishing paternity can have on both the parents and the child. Our compassionate Mokena paternity attorneys can assist you throughout the process and answer any questions you may have. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 815-727-6144.



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