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Going to Court for Establishing Paternity

This is used when the alleged father refuses to voluntarily acknowledge paternity. The process may determine if a man is the legal father of the child.

If the father is given legal papers to appear at a genetic test or in court and he doesn't show up, paternity may be established by default. Sometimes a parent may want proof that the man is the biological father of the child before he is named the legal father, and either parent may request genetic testing. The court will issue an order establishing paternity. This may require a genetic test. Most tests take a swab in the mouth from the inner cheeks of the child and each parent. It does not hurt, and they do not take blood for paternity tests.

Each state may have different requirements for establishing paternity, and some situations may be more complicated. For example, if the mother was married to another man. If you need help establishing paternity, contact your local child support office.

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