Modern relationships are often complicated, especially when they come to an end. In times past, people rarely got divorced or had children out of wedlock, and when they did, there was a hefty amount of social stigma attached to their actions. Thankfully, we have moved past the era where people, especially women, were severely restricted in their actions and family law systems across the country have been updated to reflect a more accurate reality.
In Illinois, family law no longer automatically gives preference to the mother in matters like child custody (known as parental responsibilities and parenting time). However, Illinois law about paternity still has facets that are somewhat traditional, including a law that states that if a couple is or was recently married, the husband is presumed to be the legal father of a child, even if the couple gets divorced before that child is born. While for most married couples this is not an issue, for those women who have had to get divorced, dealing with a man who insists he is the father of a child when he is not can be a major problem. If your ex is claiming to be the father of your child, you may need to fight those claims in court with the help of an Illinois family lawyer.
How Can I Prove a Man is Not My Child’s Father?
A man who claims to be the father of a child when he is not will have a variety of options available to him, depending on the circumstances. For example, if you were married to a man, became pregnant, and then divorced the man, that man will legally be considered the child’s father. Until you can prove that he is not the child’s father, he may be entitled to parenting time and even parental responsibilities. It is, therefore, important to take action as quickly as possible if you are worried a man may do this to you.
You could start a paternity case of your own in court to establish the identity of the child’s true father. However, if you do not know the identity of the child’s father or do not wish to involve that man in your life either, you may still need to go to court to dispute your ex’s allegations of parenthood. You can most easily do this using a DNA test, which will not harm your child.
It is important not to sign a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity with your ex’s name on it at any time; once this form is signed and a man has begun involvement in a child’s life, it can be difficult to challenge claims of paternity even if they turn out not to be true.
Call a Wheaton, IL Paternity Dispute Lawyer
Fighting false accusations of any kind can be a tremendous emotional and mental burden, especially when the well-being of your child is at stake. If you are facing a paternity suit and are worried about the outcome for yourself and your little one, contact the DuPage County paternity lawyers at MKFM Law. Our attorneys are experienced with even the most complex paternity cases and will work for a favorable outcome in your case. We invite you to call us today at 630-665-7300 to learn more.