Legally Establishing Paternity in Arizona and Why it Matters
Posted on : June 27, 2017, By: Christopher Hildebrand
Legally Establishing Paternity in Arizona and Why it Matters
Are you a mother looking for legal validation or confirmation as to who the father of your child is? Perhaps you’re a father taking the first steps in asserting your father’s rights. If you’ve never been party to any proceedings related to the matter, the legal process for determining paternity can be confusing and overwhelming. Additionally, you may not be aware of all the nuances involved in legally establishing paternity. Even if you have had involvement with paternity proceedings in another state, the laws can vary state by state. Whether this is your first experience with legal paternity or you’re new to Arizona with an ongoing paternity case, it is best to seek the counsel of an attorney who is well-versed in your state’s paternity laws.
Legally Establishing Paternity in Arizona and Why it Matters.
At Hildebrand Law, PC, our attorney’s specialize in Arizona family law, including matters of paternity and father’s rights. If you are a mother or father looking for more information about how paternity cases are settled within the state of Arizona, contact our team of professionals to request a consultation! We’ll gladly discuss the specifics of your situation and devise an appropriate course of action for your unique case. Today, we will take a closer look at what exactly paternity is, as well as why it is important to establish the matter legally.
What is Paternity?
Many people mistakenly believe that the term “paternity” refers to situations in which it is questionable who the father of a child is. When it comes to legal terminology, this is not always the case. In the most simple terms, paternity is the legal determination and establishment of who a child’s father is. In situations where a child is born out of wedlock, regardless of whether the father is known or unknown in Arizona, a paternity case exists. For residents of Arizona, there are many means by which a paternity matter may be resolved through either voluntary or non-voluntary action of the parents.
For more information related to paternity in the state of Arizona, be sure to check out our online resources, including our FAQ page. In addition to answers to frequently asked questions, you’ll also find helpful videos and court case references.
Jennifer, thank you for being my attorney. I could not have been more pleased with the outcome of my family court hearing. Everything you have done for me throughout this case reflects in the final ruling of the judge. You helped me keep my head together and taught me a lot about myself as a person. I learned so much about my life from observing and listening to you. I will take all the advice you gave me to continue taking responsibility for my choices, continue to put the kids' needs first, and always stay truthful. Your diligence, dedication, and persistence in my case made what seemed impossible, possible. You are a wonderful person and an amazing attorney and I am stronger and more confident because of you.
I just want to again thank the Firm for working with me all that it has. I could not have done anything without everyone's assistance. You, Chris and Stacey have been and continue to provide me with compassion and hard work towards my case. Also a very special thanks to Kip for taking my case in the beginning. Also continued support from him and his dedication to providing me with his expertise in this matter.
After interviewing several law firms, I came across Jennifer Shick, and her firm, who I hired to represent me for my Family Court case. Jennifer has extensive knowledge of the law and is determined to bring the truth to every issue involved within the case. Throughout my case, Jennifer was prepared meticulously as well as went above and beyond all of my expectations. Even when the other party tried to differ from the truth, lie to the Judge, and turn situations around, Jennifer remained attentive and provided substantial evidence to show the judge the facts as well as the proof to support what was the best interests of my children. Additionally, Jennifer helped me endure many difficult experiences, situations and inspired me to remain positive throughout the entirety of my case. Her kindness, compassion, and professionalism helped me through very difficult times and made the process feel a thousand times lighter on my shoulders. She truly has my children and my best interest at heart and I trust her perspective as well as her honesty on each and every aspect of my case. She lessened the burden on my shoulders and even when I felt like the case was not going to go in my favor, Jennifer was open-minded and reassured me that the Judge would, in fact, see the truth, which he did and the case went in my favor. After nine months of court, everything finally came together. I cannot declare how much Jennifer has been an outstanding attorney. She addressed each and every issue with diligence, she cares about her clients and their families. Jennifer genuinely cares about her clients and her dedication to the details of the case was remarkable. Overall, I am extremely pleased with Jennifer’s services and I am truly thankful that I was so blessed to have her represent my children and me. I highly recommend Jennifer as one of the best attorneys in Arizona and if the situation ever arises, I will definitely have her represent my children and me again.
Dear Stacey and Kip, How can I ever thank you enough for helping me through the most difficult time in my life? I couldn't put into words my heartfelt gratefulness. You both were so compassionate and professional at every given moment throughout this process with me. I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You helped me to regain my freedom.
I was a client of Attorney Kevin Park for the dissolution of a divorce in 2016. And since I had never had the need to hire an attorney before for any purpose, I was somewhat apprehensive of the process. But the very calm and professional demeanor of Mr. Park eased my fears. He adeptly answered all my questions and I clearly knew the process and what to expect. And the skilled manner he communicated with opposing counsel was perfect. When it came down to negotiating with my spouse’s counsel, I knew I had selected the best attorney for my situation. What I noticed and appreciated was that he was using just the right amount of pressure with opposing counsel as was necessary. If you find yourself in this situation, you will want a seasoned professional like Mr. Park on your side. I'm very grateful that he was my attorney and not the opposition!
Chris is a smart and aggressive attorney for his clients. Chris always tries to reach a fair settlement of his cases. I’ve represented clients when Chris was the opposing counsel and while he is professional and amicable to work with, he does not back off on what he needs to do for his client
Kevin Park of Arizona Estate Planning Attorneys was just what I needed for my divorce. He was very approachable and personable. He was quick to recognize what I needed and provided it quickly and efficiently. I hope to never need a divorce lawyer again, but if I know anyone else who does, I will definitely recommend Kevin.
I feel that Tracey Van Wickler is certainly one of the best family lawyers around. She is logical, intelligent, and truly cares. Tracey always does what is in the clients best interest, does it well, timely and with integrity. She is good at keeping her clients informed as to what is going on and clear in her communication both written and verbally. I have recommended Tracey to other people and will continue to recommend her. I recommended Tracey to someone who was having issues with their ex-wife and his response was, “I know how good she is because I went up against her and she ate me for lunch”. This same person was so impressed with her, he even recommended her to someone else, WOW, that is impressive! I am exceptionally happy with her attention to detail, her ability to explain things in ways that are easy to understand, as well as her ability to keep everyone focused on the most important things. I would recommend Tracey to anyone who may be in need of her services.
I retained Hildebrand Law after interview a number of firms in the valley. Working with Michael C. was incredibly easy and informative. My case progressed in such a organized and thought out way to ensure that my needs were met. Michael was incredibly proactive and was able to see far ahead into my case to steer clear of some roadblocks. I would not hesitate to recommend Michael Clancy, and Hildebrand Law in general, to anyone.
I have worked with Hildebrand law for about 8 years. They are always ready to serve, provide guidance and give you a few options. When they provide you options they also take the time to walk you through the pros and cons of each and give you a recommendation of what is best, but will listen to you and support whatever course you choose after making and educated choice. I’d recommend them to my closest friends and feel Chris Hildebrand is now a friend to me.
Despite the unfortunate situation I found myself in, Chris Hildebrand @ Hildebrand Law helped me maneuver every step with professionalism, expertise, and even a sensitivity that was an added bonus.Chris and his staff helped me even when I didn't know I needed the help. In other words. . . they made sure we did not leave anything undone. And in the rare instance we needed the expertise of another professional, Chris knew exactly who to recommend.Chris also knew, because of his experience, what to anticipate down the road of litigation. That meant we were better prepared to meet the challenges head on, which lead to a more equitable and fair outcome. I appreciated that Chris did his best to meet my every need in a timely fashion, even if I had a simple question that required only a phone call or e-mail or if we needed to talk face-to-face.I highly recommend Chris Hildebrand @ Hildebrand Law, PC.
Why is Legal Establishment of Paternity Important?
Have you ever heard that a man’s name on a birth certificate document is sufficient proof that he is the legal father of the child? This is a common misconception that many people have, and a scary one, too. If this were all it took to establish who a child’s father was, anyone listed as the father on the birth certificate would be legally, financially, and medically responsible for the child. Imagine the ramifications for fathers who had no idea their name was placed on a birth certificate.
As you can see, having proper legal channels for determining paternity is vital, and for many reasons. Some of the most common reasons legal establishment of paternity is so important to include:
Establishing Father’s Rights. In the state of Arizona, an unwed father has no legal rights related to a child until he establishes paternity. This means he has no rights to visitation or involvement in parenting choices such as where the child attends school or any medical decisions. For unwed fathers wishing to have participation and an active voice in his child’s life, legal determination of paternity is necessary and paramount.
Securing Financial Support. If an unwed father has no legal rights to a child in the absence of establishing paternity, he is not held financially responsible for anything related to the child. This can prove problematic for unwed mothers who are unable to raise a child on one income, or if the child has extensive medical expenses. Legally establishing paternity is the only way for the mother to secure financial assistance from the child’s father.
Why it matters to officially establish paternity.
Ensuring Access to Important Information. In the absence of legal paternity being established, a child’s father may not have access to important information, such as court documentation, school and medical records, and other relevant documents. If a couple feels it is important for the father to have access to critical legal information related to the child, they must legally establish paternity.
Child’s Rights to the Father’s Benefits: Without a legal determination of paternity, the child of an unwed couple will have no rights to any of the father’s benefits. This can be very important if your child becomes ill or if the birth mother passes away. Only when paternity is legally determined as a child eligible for things such as health insurance, social security, inheritance, and military rights.
In addition to those listed above, there are many other benefits to establishing paternity in the state of Arizona. For compassionate, professional, and reliable legal counsel related to matters of paternity, contact Hildebrand Law, PC. We are happy to answer any questions you have about the legal process of establishing paternity. In our next installment, we’ll continue our discussion on the topic by taking a closer look at how paternity can be established in Arizona.
If you have a question about paternity in Arizona, please call to speak to one of our experienced Scottsdale and Phoenix Arizona paternity attorneys at (480)947-4339.
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