Articles Posted in Paternity

paternity.jpgAs a Jacksonville Family Law Lawyer, I often have cases where a mother and father are not married to one another but they have a child in common. In my experience many men falsely believe simply because their name is on the birth certificate that they are legally the fathers. In Florida this is simply not the case! There is more that is required for unwed fathers in Florida to gain legal rights over their children.

Under Florida law, until a Judge signs an Order which determines that an unwed man is the father of a child, then the child is NOT legally his. As such, the man has no legal rights to the child. That includes no rights for timesharing and no rights over major decisions in the child’s life. This means that if the child’s mother does not want to allow the alleged father to see the child, she is under no legal obligation to do so.

In order to be recognized as the legal father in Florida it is necessary to file what is called a Petition for Determination of Paternity. Paternity actions are brought before a court in order to assist a parent in acknowledging and protecting important time-sharing and child support rights and/or obligations.

baby dad.jpgAs a Jacksonville Family Law Lawyer, I often have cases where the parties are not married but they have a child in common. In my experience many men falsely believe simply because their name is on the birth certificate that they are legally the fathers. In Florida this is simply not the case!

Under Florida law, until a Judge signs an Order which determines you are the father, then the child is NOT legally yours. As such, you have no legal rights to the child for timesharing or parental rights of any kind.

In order to be recognized as the legal father in Florida it is necessary to file what is called a Petition for Determination of Paternity. Paternity actions are brought before the court in order to assist a parent in acknowledging and protecting important time-sharing and child support rights and/or obligations.

The State of Florida has child support guidelines that must be followed when calculating child support in a divorce or paternity case. Generally speaking, the parties’ combined net income, the percentage of time each party spends with the children, and the number of children involved are used in determining the amount of child support. Child care costs and health insurance costs are also added into the equation when determining child support.

It is important to note that child support cannot be waived by the parents. Child support is considered a right of the child not of the parent. Therefore, parents cannot bargain away their duty to support their child(ren).

Contact a Jacksonville Child Support Lawyer for further information of Florida’s Child Support laws.

usher.jpgDrug testing is a common issue in divorce and other legal proceedings involving children. Family Law Judges in Jacksonville have the authority to order a parent who is alleged to be using and or abusing illegal substances to submit to a drug test. This usually occurs upon motion of the other party or parent.

Reportedly, R&B star, Usher, is finding himself in this exact situation. Neontommy.com posted an article, which opens with, “In the heat of a custody battle, Usher’s ex-wife, Tameka Raymond, is practically begging for the judge to have him drug tested. She claims that the R&B superstar “pops pills” and “who knows what else” in front of their two boys.”

If you live in the Jacksonville area and are concerned that your ex-spouse or soon-to-be-ex-spouse is abusing drugs around your children contact a Jacksonville Family Law Lawyer today to schedule a free consultation.

retroactive cs.jpgIt’s not uncommon for parents to decide to part ways and raise their children separately. Some parents are able to work things out without going to court, but oftentimes the court needs to step in and help determine each parent’s rights.

Child support payments are often contested in these situations. Your former spouse may think you owe more than you think you do. If you go to court, you may find the court is on your side. If the court orders child support payments, however, you may find yourself owing more than you originally thought.

In fact, in paternity actions, dissolution of marriages, or petitions for support during marriage, the court has the discretion to award child support retroactive to the date when the parents did not reside together. The court can order payments from up to 24 months in the past.

putative father.jpegThe State of Florida’s legislature, in 2003, created what is called a “Putative Father Registry.” This registry was created so unmarried “putative” fathers could register their intent to exercise parental rights to a child who the they believe may have been born by virtue of a sexual relationship they had with the child’s mother. What exactly does putative father mean? Putative father is a person who is alleged to be the father of a child or the supposed father of a child.

Florida Law states that an unmarried man, by virtue of the fact that he engaged in a sexual relationship with a woman, is deemed to be on notice that a pregnancy and an adoption proceeding regarding the child may occur and that he has a duty to protect his own rights and interest.

In order to preserve the right to notification and consent in the event of an adoption an unmarried man in the State of Florida must file a claim of Paternity with the Florida Putative Father Registry. By doing this he must confirm his inclination and intent to support the child for whom paternity is claimed. However, such a claim of paternity may not be filed after the date a Petition is filed for the Termination of Parental Rights.

whos your daddy.jpgAs a Jacksonville Paternity Lawyer, I often have cases where the parties are not married but they have a child in common. In my experience many men falsely believe simply because their name is on the birth certificate that they are legally the fathers. In Florida this is simply not the case!

Under Florida law, until a Judge signs an Order which determines you are the father, then the child is NOT legally yours. As such, you have no legal rights to the child for timesharing or parental rights of any kind.

In order to be recognized as the legal father in Florida it is necessary to file what is called a Petition for Determination of Paternity. Paternity actions are brought before the court in order to assist a parent in acknowledging and protecting important time-sharing and child support rights and/or obligations.

dress.jpgHiring a good Florida Family Law Attorney is one of the more important decisions you can make in your family law issue. A good attorney will use the most persuasive means to advocate your cause.

Sometimes, however, people overlook a very important aspect of persuasion: your attire. As the client, you want to give the court the best impression you can. This means you need to dress conservatively. The court may not say anything if you show up in jeans and a cut-off shirt; however, the court definitely does notice it. You want to make a good impression, so wear something you might wear to church or to a nice restaurant.

Most of all, you want to convey respect to the court. Look presentable. The court might not notice if you got a new haircut, but it will definitely notice if you just rolled out of bed. Being presentable to the court will help your Florida Family Law Attorney persuade the court to your side. Contact an attorney to discuss any family law issues you may have.

Florida Statute 61.13001 governs this issue of parental relocation with a minor child. The Statute defines Relocation as, “a change in the location of the principal residence of a parent or other person from his or her principal place of residence at the time of the last order establishing or modifying time-sharing, or at the time of filing the pending action to establish or modify time-sharing. The change of location must be at least 50 miles from that residence, and for at least 60 consecutive days not including a temporary absence from the principal residence for purposes of vacation, education, or the provision of health care for the child.”

The Statute further states, in so many words, unless an agreement has been entered between the parents as to the relocation the parent desiring to relocate must file a Petition to Relocate with the Court and serve the same upon the other parent.

As a Jacksonville Family Law Lawyer, I know what this Petition needs to entail and the process of filing it and arguing it (if necessary) before a Judge.

In Florida all parents must contribute to the support of their minor child(ren). A minor child is defined as a child who has not yet reached majority (18 years old). If however, the child is 18 but is still in high school, than child support can be extended until either high school graduation or the child’s 19th birthday; whichever occurs first.

Child support in Jacksonville is based upon the Florida Child Support Guidelines and the net income of both parents. It is based solely upon income and parent’s expenses or cost of living is never considered. Parents CANNOT legally waive child support. Child support is a right of the child, thus not a right of parents who can choose to waive them. Therefore, in every case where there are minor children, child support must be determined.

For more information regarding Child Support in Jacksonville, Florida, contact a Jacksonville Child Support Attorney today.

Contact Information