O’Fallon Paternity Lawyer
We Offer Exceptional Legal Services to Families in St. Charles County
In Missouri, there is a firm legal distinction between a “biological
father” and a parent who has enforceable rights to their child.
Even though a biological father contributed genetically to the birth of
a child, paternity can only be established through marriage, adoption,
or a court order. For instance, paternity isn’t automatically established
if a child is born out of wedlock or is the result of an affair. Fortunately,
both the mother and the biological father can request genetic testing
and file a paternity case.
This can be an incredibly challenging process, especially if the other
parent is hesitant or outright opposed to the idea. For this reason, it’s
important to speak with a qualified attorney from Winghaven Law, LLC as
soon as possible. Our O’Fallon paternity lawyer has a comprehensive
understanding of the numerous laws and regulations that can impact the
outcome of your case.
When you work with our firm, you can take comfort in knowing that your
case is in capable hands. Our legal team can help you accurately complete
and file the necessary forms, negotiate with your child’s other
parent, and, if necessary, represent your interests in court.
Establishing paternity is extremely important because it provides many
emotional and financial benefits to the father, mother, and child. When
a biological father successfully establishes paternity, he can legally
request child custody and visitation rights, giving him an opportunity
to develop a relationship with his child. The child’s other parent
can’t deny the father’s rights once paternity has been established,
unless there are mitigating circumstances recognized by the court.
Likewise, it’s incredibly difficult for a single parent to raise
a child without a co-parent’s economic support. Once paternity is
established, the child’s father can share in the responsibilities
of parenthood and provide child support payments. If needs must, the child
can also be placed on the father’s health insurance policy.
Paternity can be established both “voluntarily” and “involuntarily”
depending on the relationship between the child’s parents.
If both parents agree about the identity of the child’s father, they
can take the following steps to ensure his paternity is confirmed:
- Both parents can sign an Affidavit Acknowledging Paternity when the baby
is born at the hospital
- The parents can complete the affidavit after contacting the Family Support
Division (FSD) the Department of Health and Senior Services’ Bureau
of Vital Records
- Secure an order that states the biological parent is also the legal father
through the Family Support Division (FSD)
However, if one parent disagrees about the identity of the child’s
father, paternity will need to be established involuntarily through court
action and free genetic testing. Either parent can also take the case
to court by filing a paternity case in the circuit court in the county
where the child lives.
Protect Your Paternal Rights
There are many unique factors and unexpected contingencies that can affect
the outcome of your paternity case. Contact Winghaven Law, LLC if you’re
ready to fight for your legal parental rights. Our trial-tested attorney
has the skills and resources to guide you through each step of this complex
We are proud to provide informed legal guidance and exceptional services
to families in Lake St. Louis, St. Peters, Wentzville, Weldon Spring,
Foristell, and New Melle.
Contact Winghaven Law, LLC today to schedule a case evaluation.