Establishing Paternity, Child Support and Custody

Ending a relationship between two parents who were never married is easier from a legal standpoint than ending a marriage because it did not result in a divorce. Unfortunately, if children from this relationship are involved, it can be just as complicated, especially if the mother does not want the father to have visitation rights with his children.

The best way to handle this situation is to never get into it in the first place, and by maintaining a cordial relationship with the mother. Unfortunately, that is not always possible, and the matter ends up in a legal setting.   Contacting a legal professional can be the first step in establishing paternity and getting visitation rights.

Usually the first step in this kind of visitation case is to establish paternity. This is done by the mother, child and yourself all taking a paternity test. The results are later included in the paternity trial. If the results show that a plaintiff is indeed the child’s father, several things can happen. First, the father may be responsible for child support payments. He is also now entitled to ask for visitation rights, or even custody of the child. These proceedings are usually a separate process from determining paternity.

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