Why should you establish paternity?

| Apr 8, 2020 | Family Law |

Unwed fathers in Colorado do not have the same rights as their married counterparts. The law assumes a married man to be the father of his wife’s child. Unmarried men must go through extra steps to verify and establish this. To some men, this seems like unnecessary hassle.

Today we will talk about why that is not the case. Unwed fathers who do not establish paternity may find themselves facing a dilemma. This dilemma revolves around their child and potential involvement in that child’s life.

Establishing paternity for your child

The National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse discusses the importance of establishing paternity. This reason is involvement in your child’s life. Of course, you do not need legal permission to see your child or spend time with them. But let us say that you and your child’s mother have a falling out. If she decides she does not want you near the child, what happens?

Maintaining involvement in your child’s life

If you do not have paternity, you have no legal standing to fight this. It does not matter how much time you have spent with the child. It does not matter if you split childcare down the middle, or if you handled the majority of it. The law does not give paternal rights to fathers who do not establish legal paternity.

You must establish paternity to secure involvement in your child’s life. No one knows how relationships will look several years down the road. The important thing is preserving your ability to communicate with your child. Without establishing paternity, you cannot have a say in raising your child. This includes matters like religion, healthcare, schooling and more. To avoid this, establishing paternity is crucial.

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