Paternity

What is a presumed father?

The Texas Family Code states that the following individual are presumed to be the father of a child:

  • A man who was married to the birth mother at conception;
  • A man who married the birth mother after the child was born and treated the child as his, was voluntarily named on the birth certificate or asserted his paternity with the paternity registry;
  • A man who filed an acknowledgment of paternity;
  • A man who continually resided with the child during the first two years of the child’s life and represented to others the child was his.

If someone is a presumed father, the only way to challenge this presumption is to initiate a court proceeding wherein the court finds that someone else is the father or if the presumed father files a denial of paternity at the same time another individual acknowledges paternity.

Will genetic testing be done?

The court can order genetic testing at the request of either party so long as paternity has not been previously established by court order or an acknowledgment of paternity has not been successfully rescinded.

What happens after paternity is established?

Once paternity is established, the case proceeds as any other child custody case.

Practice Areas

From the wide-ranging issues of divorce to the delicate nature of child support and child custody, McFarland Law, P.C. focuses on a variety of issues and cases dealing directly and indirectly with matters of family law.

Divorce

A Texas divorce involves both the division of the parties’ property and, if children are involved, child custody and child support.

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Child Custody

Child custody may be initially rendered in a Divorce or a Suit to Establish the Parent Child-Relationship, which is a custody case between unmarried parties.

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Child Support

A child support order may be initially rendered in a Divorce or a Suit to Establish the Parent-Child Relationship, which is a custody case between unmarried parties.

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Spousal Support

Spousal support may be awarded in cases where the parties have been married more than 10 years or a spouse has been convicted of or received deferred adjudication for a crime of family violence.

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Mediation

Mediation is a non-binding confidential settlement conference at which a neutral mediator is present to help you and your spouse reach a final settlement of your case.

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Grandparent Visitation

Grandparents have the right to file a lawsuit for visitation and managing conservatorship of a grandchild in certain circumstances OR if both parents consent to the grandparent filing a suit.

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Domestic Violence

The Texas Family Code has special provisions for relationships where domestic abuse has occurred or is alleged.

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Modifications

Parents have a right to have their prior custody and child support orders reviewed when there has been a change in circumstances.

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Paternity

Paternity of a child may be initially determined in a Divorce or a Suit to Establish the Parent-Child Relationship, which is a custody case between unmarried parties.

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Interstate Issues

When a child custody case involves individuals in different states, the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) determines jurisdiction.

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Hague Convention

International child abduction and child custody is governed by the international treaty of the Hague Convention on International Child Abduction.

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Enforcement

If a parent has not complied with an order for possession and access to a child or an obligation to pay child support, and that parent does not have a valid defense, then the Court may fine or jail a non-compliant parent.

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