Fatherhood is a huge deal. As a dad, it’s your job to provide for your child financially, to look out for your child’s physical and emotional well-being, and to take part in making important decisions in your child’s life. Whether or not you and the child’s biological mother are in a relationship at the time of birth, it’s very important that you take measures to establish paternity in Arizona. Today’s post will highlight who should be concerned with establishing paternity, why it’s such a critical step, and how to go about doing it.
Understanding Paternity in Arizona
The team at Schill Law Group firmly believes that taking the time to establish paternity in Arizona can work to the benefit of both yourself (the biological father) and the child. Paternity is viewed by the state as a means of creating “legal, emotional, social, and economic ties” between you and your kids. Establishing paternity (usually through genetic DNA testing) means that you are fully recognized as being the father of a given child and ensured that your parental rights to legally make decisions for your kids and enjoy “parenting time” will be protected as the child grows up.
In addition to allowing a father and child to have a positive relationship, establishing paternity is also a necessary part of conferring certain rights upon the child from the father. These rights may include (but are not limited to):
- Medical/life insurance benefits
- Veterans benefits
- Social Security benefits
- Access to information about paternal medical history
Who Should Be Interested in Establishing Paternity in Arizona?
Any father who is interested in protecting his parental rights to his children should be interested in taking the necessary steps to establish paternity in Arizona. Even fathers who do not wish to play an active role in raising their children should consider establishing paternity. This is because you will be required to pay child support, it’s in your best interest to make absolutely certain that the child is, indeed, your own.
In some instances, mothers may find that the father of their child does not wish to claim the child as his own. This can create complications in collecting the needed child support. A mother may wish to take steps to have paternity established through the Arizona court system in order to protect her child and her rights and to ensure that the child’s financial needs are met.
How is Paternity Determined in Arizona?
Paternity may be established through either a voluntary or court-ordered DNA genetic test. In order for a paternity test to be legally recognized, paternity must be established through the courts. This means that it’s often best to work with an attorney who has experience in these matters so that everything is done correctly. A legal expert can also be extremely helpful in cases where the father does not wish to submit to a paternity test and needs to be legally served and court-ordered to do so. A seasoned and knowledgeable lawyer can make the process much simpler and less stressful.
Once paternity has been officially established in Arizona, it will be recognized nationwide. This will ensure that both you and your child’s needs and rights will be protected – regardless of whether or not the child relocates to another U.S. state.