Paternity and Fathers’ Custody Rights – Challenging Paternity Claims

By Caleb Jonsun -

In custody and child support laws, the presumption is that you are the father of a child if you were married to the mother at the time the child was conceived or born. If later on, you find out that you are not the biological father of the child, and you want to be discharged of your joint custody and child support obligations, you must present evidence in the contrary. A DNA test will be your best weapon to challenge a paternity claim filed by the mother.

Genetic tests, more commonly known as DNA tests, are the quickest, least expensive and most accurate method to determine a child’s paternity. This technique can be used when you are seeking to be discharged of any child custody and support order. When the DNA test comes back negative, and you were not married to the mother at the time of conception, the paternity claim filed by the mother will be dismissed. If the test results are positive, the mother is entitled to seek future child support payments, as well as unpaid child support payments since the date the child was born.

Generally, you only have one year from the child’s birth date to challenge paternity. The reasoning behind this is that the more time elapsed, the stronger the bonds are with that child. Many states refuse to disestablish a paternity and custody decree because it is not in the child’s best interest to terminate the parental relationship of a man who discovered several years later that he is not the biological father. In these states, you can’t stop your parental responsibility, even when a DNA test proves that the child is not yours, because it is considered to be emotionally harmful.

Although promoting a healthy relationship between a legal (non-biological) father is a commendable goal, some states are now adopting a new approach to solve this type of situation. These family courts refuse to preclude the presumptive father (the man married to the child’s mother) from being able to challenge a paternity suit when the child is more that one year old, just because it might cause some emotional harm to the child. The truth is that a paternal-child relationship of many years will not necessarily be affected because it just turned out that the child is not yours.

The non-biological father that files a complaint challenging a paternity proceeding within or apart from a divorce process that can establish that he is not the biological father of the child will be discharged of having to pay child support from the date he filed the complaint.

Find out more information about paternity and learn how Custody X Change can help you stand up for your father’s custody rights.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Caleb_Jonsun
http://EzineArticles.com/?Paternity-and-Fathers-Custody-Rights—Challenging-Paternity-Claims&id=2704045

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