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Establishing Paternity in Chicago Family Law Court: A Comprehensive Guide

Paternity determination is a crucial legal process that helps set forth the legal relationship between a father and his child. In Chicago, family law courts provide a structured framework for individuals seeking to establish paternity. Whether you’re a father wanting to assert your parental rights or a mother looking to secure child support, understanding the process is essential. This blog post aims to guide you through the steps involved in establishing paternity in Chicago family law court.

Paternity refers to the legal recognition of a man as the father of a child. Establishing paternity is important for several reasons, including parental rights, child support, and access to medical history. Contrary to popular belief, a name on a birth certificate does not establish paternity. One of the simplest ways to establish paternity in Chicago is through the Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity (VAP) form. This form is typically provided at the hospital when the child is born. Both parents sign the form, and once it’s entered by a Judge in the domestic relations division of Chicago family law courts, paternity is established. If the child’s mother and alleged father are unable to complete the VAP at the hospital, there are other options, including court-ordered DNA testing to establish paternity.

Furthermore, in cases where there is a dispute or disagreement about paternity, either parent can file a petition with the family law court. The court may order genetic testing to determine the biological relationship between the alleged father and the child. Results from DNA testing are admissible in court and can be used to establish paternity through the entry of a court order. It is advisable for both parents involved in a paternity case to seek legal representation. An experienced family law attorney can provide guidance, ensure that your rights are protected, and help navigate the legal process effectively. Once paternity is established, the court can address issues related to child custody (which is now known as an allocation of parental responsibilities in Illinois), parenting time, decision-making, and child support

Establishing paternity is a significant step in ensuring the well-being of a child and securing the legal rights of both parents. In Chicago, family law courts provide clear processes, such as voluntary acknowledgment, administrative orders, and court-ordered DNA testing to establish paternity. Seeking legal advice and representation can greatly assist in navigating these procedures and ensuring a fair resolution for all parties involved; reach out to the experienced Chicago paternity attorneys at WARD FAMILY LAW, LLC for your consultation today. You can reach Jennifer Ward directly for scheduling at jward@wardfamilylawchicago.com.

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