There are several situations in which paternity must
be established to guarantee your rights as the parent
of the child.
Often, paternity is an issue when a child is born to an
unmarried couple. In order to have rights as a parent, you
must petition the court to establish such rights.
Also, paternity is an issue when a spouse expects a child
to be someone else's child. In California, It is presumed
that the married persons are the child’s parents. If there is
there is any doubt as to who the father of the child is, one can petition the court to determine paternity.
There are several ways to establish paternity. Signing a Voluntary Declaration of Paternity is one way to do it. If a declaration isn’t signed, and a parent's name isn't on the birth certificate, a court order is required.