- Practice Areas
- Family Law
- Criminal Defense
- View All+
Posted On September 11, 2023 Family Law
Paternity in Washington refers to the legal recognition of a man as the biological father of a child. It establishes a legal relationship between a father and his child, conferring certain rights and responsibilities on both parties.
Paternity can be established in Washington through several avenues, ensuring legal recognition of the biological relationship between a father and child.
In cases where voluntary acknowledgment is not possible or contested, one of the parties can file a petition with the court to initiate legal proceedings to establish paternity.
The court will issue summonses to notify all involved parties, including the mother, the alleged father, and any legal guardians or custodians of the child, about the pending case. This ensures that everyone involved is aware of the legal proceedings.
Both parties have the right to legal representation. They can hire their own attorneys or, in some cases, may be provided with legal assistance if they cannot afford it.
This is the phase where both parties exchange relevant information and evidence. They may request documents, ask questions, and gather evidence related to the paternity case.
If there is a dispute over paternity, the court may order a genetic test. This involves collecting DNA samples from the alleged father, the child, and sometimes the mother. These samples are sent to a laboratory for analysis.
The laboratory analyzes the DNA samples to determine the biological relationship between the alleged father and the child. The results are sent back to the court.
If the test confirms paternity, the court will issue an order formally recognizing the alleged father as the legal parent. If the test rules out paternity, the court will dismiss the case.
Establishing paternity can bring forth a range of significant advantages for both the child and the parents involved. These benefits include:
For help navigating the complexities of establishing paternity, speak to a trusted Spokane family lawyer. They can provide skilled guidance and advocate for your rights to ensure they are upheld.