Hoover Krepelka, LLP - Lawyer

Board Certified Family Law Specialists Serving Northern California

Why unwed mothers should demand that fathers establish paternity

In the state of California, unmarried fathers aren't automatically considered to be a child's biological parent, even if they're listed on their birth certificate. Instead, they must establish their paternity in order for the state to recognize them as the child's biological parent. This must occur before any visitation, custody or support order can be made by a judge.

California only recognizes the mother as the sole legal parent if it's born to an unmarried couple. Fathers can assert their parentage by voluntarily signing a declaration affirming that they're the child's biological parent. They can also have a judge sign an order to the effect.

Both unwed parents will be entitled to the same responsibilities and rights to their child once paternity is established. Each will be expected to financially support them and will be allowed to request visitation and custody once this occurs.

Unwed mothers should seek to have fathers establish their paternity soon after the child is born. This is the only way that they can ensure that he'll make support payments. If there's no court order in place, then there's little state child support enforcement agencies or judges can do to force the father to pay.

Mothers who request government financial support may have their applications approved more quickly if paternity has already been established. The reason that this is the case is that when a single mom files for assistance, the state seeks reimbursement from the father to cover their costs. If paternity hasn't yet been established, then they may require for you to do this before they'll approve your application.

Those moms who have an enforceable child support order in place may protect themselves from an ex who attempts to file for bankruptcy to avoid their financial responsibilities. California allows a support obligation to pay placed in front of other creditors. Having a child support order in place will make it easier for your ex's wages to be garnished if they stop paying or begin making late payments.

When a couple chooses to have a child, they often do so with the expectation that both will contribute financially to raising it. When that doesn't occur, then it may affect a parent's ability to provide for their child's basic needs. A San Jose family law attorney who provides personalized representation aimed at results is who you'll want to advocate for your interests at a time like this.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  • Highly Recommended
  • Top 10 | Family Law Attorney | 2019
  • Avvo Clients' Choice Award
  • National Association of Distinguished Counsel nation's top one percent NADC
  • Expertise Best Child Support Lawyers in San Jose 2018
  • American Institute of Family Law Attorneys
  • State Bar Of California California Board Of Legal Specialization
  • Esteemed Lawyers ELOA
  • 10 Best 2017 Attorney Client Satisfaction American Institute of Family Law Attorneys
  • Lawyers Of Distinction
  • BBB | Accredited Business
Email Us For a Response

Learn Your Legal Options

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

Contact Preferences

How would you like to be contacted?This field is required.

Check all that apply.


The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Hoover Krepelka, LLP - Lawyer

1520 The Alameda
Suite 200
San Jose, CA 95126

Phone: 408-922-9826
Fax: 408-947-7603
San Jose Law Office Map

We speak Russian.