Establish paternity to guarantee your parental rights

Fathers have many rights when it comes to their children. Fathers need to make sure they establish those rights, though. While a mother can be assumed upon a child's birth, the same isn't true about a father. As such, the best thing for a father to do is to make sure he seeks a paternity test or agrees to a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity.

After a child's birth, you can sign a legitimation form, which is the form that grants you the right to provide for and raise your child, even if you are not married to the mother. If you're not sure that you are the true father, you may want to ask for a DNA test. If the mother won't agree, you can file a paternity lawsuit to seek a DNA test to prove that you are or are not the father of the child.

How important is a DNA test?

It depends on the case, but if there is any question of paternity or if you need to establish your rights as a father who is unmarried, the DNA test can be extremely beneficial. DNA tests are approximately 99 percent accurate, so the likelihood of errors is low. There are rare cases when they are not accurate, such as in the case of twins (they share the same DNA).

Know your rights as a father and parent. It is your right to know your child. Seeking a paternity test is one way to do so if the mother won't allow you to acknowledge your paternity voluntarily. Our site has more information.

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