Honolulu Paternity Lawyers
Legally Establishing Paternity On Oahu And The Neighboring Islands
While the overall birth rate in the United States is declining, an increasing number of babies are born to single parents.
When a Hawaii baby is born to a single mother, the Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA) may get involved to establish paternity where public benefits are being paid for the child.
If the father is unknown, CSEA could order DNA tests from the men the mother noted as potential fathers to determine paternity. After this, the father will receive an order to pay due child support.
The father may choose to pursue conversations about receiving custody or visitation rights. If public benefits are not being paid, then such a “private case” can be started by either of the parents.
Our Honolulu paternity lawyers at Coates Frey & Hackett, AAL LLLC, can help you establish paternity and become eligible for government assistance. Call 808-379-3538.
Hawaii Child Custody: Unmarried Parents
Paternity and the Father
When the parents of a child are not married upon the birth of their child, establishing and proving paternity is necessary for the father to be granted the right to visit his child.
Paternity establishment helps the father by:
- Granting him the right to fight for custody
- Allowing him visitation
- Potentially changing the baby’s name to include the father’s last name
Paternity grants the father his right to play a role in his child’s life beyond his financial support. It allows the father to become a dad.
Paternity and the Mother
Proving the paternity of a child’s father before a court also helps the mother by granting her necessary assistance.
Having paternity established helps the mother by:
- Getting financial help through child support
- Reimbursing pregnancy and birth expenses
- Becoming eligible for other government support
Mothers are protected in paternity cases as it grants them the child support and potential government assistance they may need to give the child the life they deserve and the care they need.
Paternity and the Child
Of course, the child also stands to benefit from establishing paternity before the court. After proving paternity, the child gains certain rights and privileges.
The child’s benefits include:
- Financial support from both parents
- Inheritance from both parents
- Receipt of any benefits granted to either parent
- Emotional benefit of knowing both parents
Paternity stands to protect both child and parents alike. Beyond being required for assistance applications in Hawaii, it is a service that benefits all involved. Our paternity attorneys in Honolulu are available to parents on Oahu and neighboring islands to assist in paternity proceedings.
How Is Paternity Established In Hawaii?
Establishing paternity in Hawaii is a crucial aspect of ensuring that children have access to critical benefits such as financial support, medical coverage and inheritance rights.
Under Hawaii state law, there are several ways to establish paternity, including:
- The parents get married after the child is born
- The parents sign a document at the time of the child’s birth
- One parent files a paternity petition with the court
Voluntary acknowledgment is the most common and straightforward method and involves both parents signing a legal form (often called a “VEP”) acknowledging the father’s paternity.
Genetic testing is used when there is a dispute or uncertainty about the identity of the biological father, which is often ordered as part of a paternity court case. Whatever the method, establishing paternity is critical for the well-being and future of children and families in Hawaii.
Call our Honolulu paternity attorneys at Coates Frey & Hackett, AAL LLLC, for help establishing paternity in Hawaii: 808-379-3538.