St. Petersburg Paternity Attorneys
Prove or disprove a father’s biological relationship
Fatherhood comes with many important benefits and responsibilities. Evidence of paternity gives a father the opportunity to reunite with his children and protects his visitation and childrearing rights. Proof of paternity also allows children to receive full advantages from both parents — including child support, inheritance, public benefits and insurance. On the other hand, negative paternity test results can help a man avoid lifetime financial liability to a child who is not his.
With more than 25 years of experience, the family law attorneys at St. Petersburg firm William B. Bennett, P. A. guide parents through paternity issues. We advise both men and women about their legal options for proving or disproving paternity.
Legal presumption of fatherhood
A man is legally presumed to be the father of a child if:
- The child was born or conceived while he was married to the mother
- He legitimized the child through marriage to the mother
- He adopted the child
- Court proceedings established that he is the father
- An administrative order was issued based on genetic testing
- The father and mother officially acknowledged paternity
We review individual circumstances to determine whether parents have a legal basis for claiming paternity and the best means for establishing fatherhood.
Genetic testing produces reliable scientific proof of paternity. The Florida Department of Revenue administers and regulates DNA testing. Parents may not need to go to court, but can instead seek an administrative order directly from the agency. If one party refuses to cooperate, however, we ask a court to intervene and order the DNA testing.
Florida putative father registry
The Florida putative father registry provides a means for asserting paternity by an unmarried biological father. The system administered by the Florida Department of Health protects a father’s rights if the mother places their child up for adoption or if she enters dependency proceedings.
Find out more about proving and disproving paternity from experienced Pinellas County family law attorneys
Call St. Petersburg family law firm William B. Bennett, P. A. at 727.821.8000 or contact us online for more information about methods of establishing paternity.