The issue of paternity is something I see all the time as a Jacksonville Child Custody and Child Support Lawyer. In Florida a child does not have a legal father if the mother was not married when the child was born. Legal paternity must be established for the child in order for the child and father to get all of their legal rights and benefits.
In Florida, there are five ways to establish paternity:
Marriage: The parents are married to each other when the child is born.
Acknowledgement of Paternity: The unmarried couple signs a legal document in the hospital when the child is born, or later.
Administrative Order Based on Genetic Testing: Paternity is ordered if a genetic test proves fatherhood.
Court Order: A judge orders paternity in court.
Legitimation: The mother and natural father get married to each other after the child is born and update the birth record through the Florida Office of Vital Statistics.
Contact a Jacksonville Child Custody and Child Support Lawyer if you want to establish your rights as a father in Florida.