Many cases in the family court system can be emotional and life-changing for all involved. Cases involving paternity can affect the parents, the child and may involve all sorts of situations and scenarios. Texas parents can benefit from knowing what to expect and what the consequences may be for parents and children during and after a paternity suit.
A paternity suit can naturally come about when it is unclear who the father of a child is and support is at stake. This can help a mother establish conclusively who the father may be, typically leading to an order for the payment of child support. Also, if a father seeks to pursue custody or visitation rights, a formal determination of fatherhood is a prerequisite.
A suit may be filed or explored by someone other than a parent. A child may be at the heart of the legal maneuver if that child wants the father's last name and all the benefits that may accompany that particular name change. A government agency may also be involved as a means of enforcing child support payments.
Once paternity is legally established, parents and children may find issues that were unexpected need to be handled in accordance with the applicable laws. The importance of proving paternity and the consequences that follow necessitate a full understanding of the process by all involved. Our firm has more information about paternity suits in general and the circumstances under which a suit may be needed in the state of Texas.