When Paternity Actions Make Sense

Many people have children without getting married. As long as the parents have a good relationship, the child can receive the love and support he or she needs from both parents. Unfortunately, if the relationship ends, the child can suffer.

At the law firm of Peterson, Berk & Cross, S.C., our lawyers represent unmarried fathers and mothers who have disputes over issues such as child support, child custody and placement, health insurance responsibility, and use of the child for purposes of federal and state income tax dependency exemption. We have offices in Appleton and Green Bay, Wisconsin.

The first step in resolving a dispute involving children born outside of marriage, where there is no acknowledgement of paternity filed with the state, is to file a paternity action.

What Is A Paternity Action?

A paternity action is a legal proceeding to establish the father of a non-marital child. If either side contests who the father is, the court will order a DNA test. In some counties, if both parents agree to who the father is and an acknowledgement of paternity has been filed with the state, no DNA test is necessary.

Once the court establishes paternity, one parent may have the right to obtain child support, including back child support in some cases. The parents may need to set up custody and a set placement schedule. The following are examples of the types of issues our lawyers handle:

  • Establishment of child support orders
  • Modification or enforcement of existing child support orders
  • Establishment of child custody and placement plans for parents
  • Modification of child custody and placement
  • Relocation of a custodial parent
  • Responsibility for health insurance for the minor child
  • Use of the child as a dependency exemption and/or qualifying child credit for federal and state income tax filing purposes

Our family law attorneys understand Wisconsin paternity statutes.

Contact Our Appleton Paternity Lawyers

Take the first step to ensure that your child receives the love and support that he or she needs. Call 920-831-0300 or complete our simple contact form.

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