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Challenging or Asserting Paternity in Florida

If there is a question about whether an individual fathered a child, a paternity test may be in order. When a paternity claim is brought to court, it takes the form of a civil lawsuit in which both sides are allowed to present and contest evidence.

While the majority of us are familiar with the types of genetic paternity testing typically featured on television and in movies, there are actually several ways to prove or disprove paternity. In some instances, a father may simply choose to acknowledge paternity in a court of law, and in other cases medical records or other types of documentation may be needed. Both parties have the right to dispute claims for or against paternity.

There are several strategies to use when disputing paternity, including the following:

  • Provide evidence that the purported father is sterile
  • Demonstrate that the lab results were subject to contamination or tampering
  • Disprove data previously used to establish paternity

Aside from the specific parental rights in question during a paternity suit, there are more salient concerns regarding the child’s well-being. A paternity determination may impact child support, inheritance or Social Security benefits. In addition, determining a child’s paternity establishes vital medical history, which can prove extremely valuable in the event of an illness or the onset of a genetic disability.

For help establishing or challenging paternity, work with a knowledgeable family law attorney in Orange County, Florida.

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