Paternity actions are fundamental to ensuring proper custody, parenting time, and support orders for minor children. Paternity must be determined to preserve a father’s right to see his child, and to set the fair and reasonable amount of child support to take care of the child's needs. It is also crucial to define paternity and thus settle any questions regarding parentage before an order of child support or child custody is entered.
Sterling Law Office attorneys represent both men and women in the full spectrum of paternity situations, including unmarried father's and mother's rights and responsibilities. Through modern DNA technology, a simple swab from the inside of the mouth can provide the evidence to establish paternity. A team member at Sterling Law Office can explain the DNA paternity testing process and help you request a test.
Once a child's parentage has been established, custody and child support can be addressed. If paternity is not proven, custody and/or child support arrangements that were made outside of the court are not legally enforceable. Additionally, there are specific legal rulings which guide paternity in cases where a child is conceived with a man who is not the husband, but born while a marriage is intact.
Divorce and custody matters are complex litigation and rarely accomplished using Do It Yourself (DIY) programs. Very few family law matters are “simple.” Minor children, paternity, spousal support, separate property, real estate, business interests, and retirement accounts automatically mean your family law matter is not “simple.” Having an attorney, and especially having a Sterling Law Office attorney, helps you navigate this complicated process. We do however acknowledge that full legal services are not an option for some people, and we can help direct you to appropriate resources. We do contract for certain services on a limited scope basis.
Whether you are the mother or father, and regardless of what the paternity issue may be, Sterling Law attorneys are very skilled and ready to help.
Call Sterling Law Office at 231-486-0559 for a free family law phone consult. We follow up phone consults with a Case Evaluation.
We also offer a PAT (Paternity Action Team) form package at a cost of $50.00. This is helpful if you are interested in a do-it-yourself approach. Please contact our office if you would like to purchase a form package.
At a Case Evaluation, we meet with you in person (or by video conference if you are unable to come to one of our offices). After an intake interview, we hear your story and your goals. We help you understand your legal rights. After we help you sort it all out, we create for you a Plan of Action identifying your Next Steps to reach your goals. We charge a flat fee of $100.00 for the Case Evaluation. Most people find that the Case Evaluation is extremely helpful. We see these potential clients lift their shoulders and breathe a sigh of relief when they leave our office following a Case Evaluation.
After a case evaluation, if the plan of action calls for attorney involvement, you may want to hire our firm to represent you. If so, you can expect to then sign a contract and pay a deposit on your future legal expenses.
Sterling Law Office areas of practice include specialization in advocacy and divorce tailored for men. Sterling Law Office has a strong and successful history of representing both women and men in all areas of family law, including divorce.