Generally, unmarried parents have the same rights and obligations towards their children as married parents.
I aggressively represent the legal rights of unmarried mothers and fathers. I offer myclients a welcoming environment and the security that comes from knowing they have transferred a difficult problem into highly capable hands.
Before unmarried parents can assert their legal rights or take legal action to force the other parent to comply with the legal responsibilities of parenthood, paternity must be established. Please call me today at 682-234-2006 or email me so I can help you.
Paternity must be formally established because, under Texas law, a child born to an unmarried mother has no legal father. Acknowledgment of paternity or a formal legal action to establish paternity is the first required step before
- The child’s mother can collect child support from the child’s biological father;
- The child’s biological father can establish visitation time with his child; or
- The child’s biological father can seek custody in a child custody dispute.
Although in many cases, mothers who want to establish paternity in order to collect child support can receive assistance from Office of the Texas Attorney General, they may wish to consider hiring an attorney. A mother should consider retaining counsel if she is requesting anything other than guideline child support, or support recommended by the Texas Family Code, including retroactive child support or recovery of maternity related medical expenses. She should also consult with an attorney if she is considering anything other than a standard possession order with regards to visitation.
Men who may be fathers should always consider retaining private counsel. The consequences of a legal finding of paternity can be far-reaching and irreversible, even when the individual is not the biological father.
If you have questions about establishing or denying paternity, or if you have received a child support collection notice for a child who is not your biological child, schedule a confidential consultation with me. I can advise you regarding genetic testing to establish paternity and the long-term consequences of false paternity statements.
Texas Paternity Registry
Men in Texas who have reason to believe they have fathered a child may file a paternity claim with the paternity registry operated by the Texas Department of State Health Services, Vital Statistics Unit. Filing an Intent to Claim Paternity form helps protect a biological father’s rights as a legal parent.