Clients often ask me, “ How do you define parentage and paternity in Orange County CA ; what does it mean legally “. My best definition would be as follows, In Orange County as well as the rest of California, when a woman bears an infant; she is in most cases the legal mother of the infant. Therefore she possesses the responsibilities and rights for the infant. When I used the phrase, “in most cases” that refers to special arrangements the biological mother has made with a third party. For instance, she was paid to carry the baby to term, in other words she performed the service of being a surrogate mother, in order to make other’s dreams come true. For some individuals this is somewhat controversial, but legal.
Next we hear the term, “paternity”. Paternity in simple terms means, “the father”, “fatherhood”. However, the responsibilities and rights for the infant are not automatically passed on to fathers that are not legally married to the mother; therefore, they have not been legally recognized.
In such parentage or paternity explanations, they arise from mothers or fathers wishing to establish or disprove fatherhood of a child. The cases are known as “paternity cases” or “parentage cases”.
Here are some examples of why a mother would like to establish paternity:
• Pass on responsibilities to the father
• Grant the child benefits through the father’s means; such as, insurance “health, social security, life insurance; inheritance rights.
Here are some examples of why a mother would like to disprove paternity:
• Prevent visitation and child custody. For instance, when a father is absent, the mother will have 100% custody of the child. Once a father is brought into the child’s life, the father in many cases will want to share custody of the child. Therefore, in many cases the mother will view this as a threat. It is rare to see a father trying to establish custody of their child in order to lower their child support responsibilities, but I have heard of such motives. Nevertheless, it is difficult to prove.
• Past domestic violence issues.
• The mother has moved on with her life and she and child have started a new life with a stepfather and they do not wish to complicate the status quo.
My family law firm is located in the City of Orange California, which is a city located in Orange County. We are located within walking distance of the family law court “ Lamoreaux Justice Center ”, which hears such paternity cases. Please feel free to contact me for a case review. The consultation is free; therefore, no obligations. However if you feel you benefited from my service, please suggest my services to your friends and family. I would be honored to assist.