California Paternity Law – basic overview
When unmarried domestic partners are breaking their relationship, or anybody gives birth to a baby and needs to sort out their rights and obligations, under California paternity law they can start a legal action to Establish Parental Relations. This is a paternity action in California Superior Court that determines parenthood rights, child support, and establishes the future rights and privileges of parenting, i.e. a parenting plan, custody, visitation, and time-sharing arrangements.
California Paternity Law DNA Testing and Parenting Plans
A person who is said to be the father of a child is entitled by California paternity law to a paternity DNA blood (or saliva) test to prove fatherhood. The alleged father is also entitled to legal counsel in a paternity case before fatherhood can be adjudged or denied and California guideline child support set. The court will award child custody and child support can depend on the circumstances, the parenting capabilities of the parties, and the parenting patterns established at the time the matter is brought to court, under California paternity law.
If the father is challenging the paternity, temporary child support may be awarded while it is determined whether the alleged father’s DNA test is positive. If the test is negative, the child support already paid can be returned to the paying party under California paternity law.
California Paternity Law for Domestic Partners
Domestic partners in California have nearly all of the legal rights and obligations of marital partners. This applies to the rearing of children. Things become much more complicated when there are children conceived through in vitro fertilization and through other high biotech systems. Lesbian natural mothers, in general, are treated the same as any mother, but lesbian egg donors and partners are not accorded full parental rights. Pre-birth agreements between the prospective parents can enhance the legal rights of a lesbian non-biological “mother”. Thus, it is always a good idea to consult a California family attorney about the rights to parent a child in a domestic partnership.
California Paternity Law Birth Certificates and Name Changes
In a paternity case, the parties can also request a name change for the child, or an amendment to the birth certificate to reflect the true parentage of the child under California paternity law.
What If The Other Party Is Lying?
A party can lie, and many do, even under oath. Such lies amount to “perjury”, a crime. Will they be punished? Rarely. Do we use their lies against them to our client’s advantage? Frequently.
How does Long Will It take?
A DNA test can be ordered in a matter of a couple of weeks and the results are available about two weeks later. Custody disputes in California can be resolved in as little as one phone call from a California family lawyer depending on the willingness of the parties to cooperate and work constructively together.
Why hire a lawyer?
Parenthood is a singular right and obligation. Without a skilled, aggressive, and knowledgeable California family lawyer, the parent is running the risk of many grave injustices, including over or underpayment of support, inappropriate custody arrangements, unworkable visitation and time-sharing plans, and other serious problems affecting their children’s rights, their finances, and their future.
Contact Us 714-390-3766 For Help with Paternity Matters