Child Support and Children Who Are Not Yours
Child Support Lawyers in Austin, TX
There is much confusion as to a man’s obligation to pay child support for children who are not their biological children. Men may be concerned about their legal and moral responsibility toward a child they did not father or adopt. A child support lawyer has information about this and other issues that are associated with family law matters. If you would like to make sure that you are within your rights or would like to clarify your legal options, consider meeting with a child support lawyer. In addition to addressing your concerns and answering your questions, if appropriate for your circumstances, your lawyer can draw up any relevant child support agreements to protect your rights.
A Child Who is Born During a Marriage
In most states, if a man and woman are married and a child is born during that marriage, the court assumes that the man is the father. He is then financially responsible for helping to raise that child, even if the marriage ends and a DNA test proves you were not the father. That said, there are exceptions to this assumption as a child support lawyer can tell you. Even in states that make this assumption, you may have the legal right to rebut that assumption. With the help of a child support lawyer, you can make the case that you should not have to pay child support to that child because you are not the father. Based on the circumstances of your case, your lawyer can give you an indication of whether or not your petition might be successful. Note the following:
- If you sign the divorce papers before contesting your paternity, the court will determine that you are the father and this is unlikely to change even by petition.
- Even if you did not have any reason to believe the child is not yours until after you agreed to the divorce, the court will not change their ruling that you are the father.
If You Say You’re the Father of the Child
If a child is born before you marry the mother, and even if you know the child is not yours, but your name is on the birth certificate as the father and you subsequently marry the mother, the court will rule that you are the father. With that comes the legal obligation to help support that child if you terminate the marriage. With the help of a child support lawyer, you may be able to petition the court to change that designation, but it will depend on large part on the state’s laws.
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