Paternity in Minnesota is a frequent issue that must be navigated for the good of the parents and the child. One issue that must be understood is 'Recognition of Parentage.' This is a document establishing the legal relationship between a man and his child if he is not married to the mother. However, there are other factors to remember, such as its advantages, disadvantages and how it can be undone.
The arrival of a new baby in the lives of Minnesota parents is often a celebrated and joyous event. For many, children are a blessing that grow their families and add love to their daily lives. However, in some cases the birth of a child may raise questions about their parentage that are difficult to answer. Although it is very easy to identify a child's mother at birth, knowing who fathered the newborn can be difficult to determine if there is uncertainty regarding the child's conception.
When a child is born in Minnesota, not every couple will be 100 percent certain as to the identity of the biological father. Paternity can be a complex issue rife with emotional, personal and financial ramifications. It is important for the parents to understand the various aspects of paternity such as the difference between a biological and legal father and who is financially responsible for the child. This can have a long-lasting impact not just on the parents, but on the child as well.
Paternity involves establishing a man as a child's biological father. As discussed in prior posts on this Minnesota family law blog, with the establishment of paternity comes many rights and responsibilities for the father. In some cases a claim for paternity may be made by a man who wishes to have involvement in his child's life. In other scenarios a claim of paternity may be initiated by a mother who wants her child's father to participate in the care and expenses associated with raising the child.
It happens sometimes in Minnesota that there is a question as to who a child's father is. However, if a man is unwed to the child's mother, believes he is the child's father and wants to pursue rights to his child, he needs to establish paternity. If not, he could unwittingly relinquish his rights to the child. That is when it is important to have an attorney by one's side, such as those at the law office of Terzich & Ort, LLP.
In Minnesota there are several scenarios under which a man is presumed to be a child's father. For example, if the man is married to the child's mother then it is presumed that he is the father. Also, if the child is not an adult and the man holds the child out as his offspring and allows the child to live in his home, then the man will also be presumed to be the child's father. There are other established presumptions of paternity that readers may discuss with their family law attorneys.
When a child is born to unmarried parents in Minnesota, certain steps can be taken to establish legal fatherhood. While each child in the state has a biological father, that is different from being a legal father. A legal father is the person that the state recognizes as being the child's father, with all the rights and duties that entitles him to.
For Minnesotans, the term "paternity" means more than just the establishing of the biological father of a child. It is an important factor in parental rights and the relationship between father and child. It also helps with making certain that the child is adequately cared for whether there is a relationship between the child and the father or not. There are important points that must be remembered when it comes to paternity.
Children born in Minnesota deserve to know who both their parents are, even if they are only being raised by one parent. While establishing parentage when a couple is married is easy, as it is assumed the husband is the child's father, for unmarried couples, parentage must be established to name a man as the child's legal father.
Unmarried fathers in Minnesota who are no longer in a relationship with their child's mother still often want to play an active part of their child's life. They want to go to special events such as their child's soccer games and dance recitals. They want to celebrate holidays and birthdays with their child. But even more, they simply want to have dinner with their child and then tuck their child in at night.