Now that your ex has had your baby, you might wonder exactly what your rights are for being a father to the child. This is a very touchy subject for some people because of the responsibilities that come with having paternity legally established. It is imperative that you understand some important points about paternity if you are facing this situation.
Your baby is going to grow quickly. It is important for you to act quickly when it is time for you to exercise your rights as a father. One of the first things that you should do is to establish paternity. Sign an affidavit regarding the child. This would involve you signing a form that acknowledges that you are the child’s father. In some cases, it might necessary to go to court and have a DNA test performed. Be sure that you understand exactly what you need to do to establish paternity, as this is your key to fathers’ rights.
Understand the benefits
There are many benefits that come with establishing paternity. You will have the basis for seeking child custody or visitation with the child. You will be able to seek decision making powers for some or all of the choices that are made for your child’s education, health care, and other aspects of life. Your child will benefit from you establishing paternity because your child will know both parents.
He or she would also get to know your side of the family, which could improve the sense of identity. Just knowing that there is another layer of support that can only come from a father could have a positive impact.
Know the obligations
On top of the benefits of paternity, you will also have some obligations that you will have to meet. This typically means that you have to pay child support. It also means that you will need to provide medical insurance for the child. In some cases, you will have to go to court regarding these matters. However, that isn’t always necessary.
If you and your ex can work together, mediation might help you to come to an agreement. In this case, it is necessary to ensure that the agreement meets the requirements that are set by law. Child support, for example, must meet the current guidelines for support. The court will have to approve any child custody and support agreement to ensure that it is in the child’s best interests.