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When Can a Man Be Presumed the Legal Father?

In the state of California, there are multiple scenarios in which a man will be considered the presumed father. This includes a man who is considered the legal father even when he is not the biological father. Here are the scenarios, according to information available on the California Courts website:

  • The man was married to the mother of the child at the time that the child was born or conceived.
  • The man made an effort to marry the child's mother (even in cases in which the marriage is not considered valid), and the child was born or conceived at the time of the "marriage."
  • The man married the child's mother following the birth of the child, and he consented to paying child support or to having his name included on the child's birth certificate.
  • "Parentage by Estoppel": The man opened his home to the child and carried on as if the child were his own biological son or daughter. In scenarios such as these, the man would be considered the legal father.

When these grounds of presumption are not present, it is necessary for the father to legally establish paternity. This is typically necessary in cases in which the parents are not married. A couple of the main ways that a father can establish paternity are 1) signing a voluntary declaration of paternity, or 2) obtaining a court order that legally establishes paternity.

Do you have a paternity matter that needs to be addressed? If so, our Mission Viejo divorce lawyer is available to assist you. Our divorce and family law firm has been assisting clients for the past 13 years. We are dedicated to protecting the best interests of our clients and of their families. Contact our firm to get the high-caliber legal assistance you need and deserve!