How do I establish paternity?

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How do I establish paternity?

Post  Admin on Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:18 pm

An action may be brought to establish the paternity of a child born out of wedlock, to compel the support of the child, and to establish custody and visitation rights. The action may be filed by the mother, father, or guardian where the child resides or may be found. A.R.S. § 25-803.

What should I do if someone I am not married to is pregnant and I want to ensure that she does not give the child up for adoption?

A father (or a person who thinks he is a father) who is seeking to establish paternity and wants to receive notice of adoption proceedings must file a notice of his claim of paternity and his willingness to support the child with the registrar of vital statistics. The notice may be filed before the birth of the child, but must be filed within thirty days of the birth of the child. A.R.S. § 8-106.01 and § 25-812.

Will I have to take a blood test?

In most cases no. However, the court may on its own motion or the motion of any party to the proceedings order blood or DNA testing.

What are my support obligations once paternity is established?

After a finding of paternity, the court shall determine the amount of past support to be paid. The court will not order past support back further than three years from the beginning of the proceeding unless it finds there is good cause. A father may also be ordered to pay the expenses of the childbirth. A.R.S. § 12-809.

What do I get custody or visitation rights?

Custody and visitation can be established through a paternity action by any party other than the state.

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