San Diego Paternity Attorney
When a child is born to an unmarried couple, either parent may file a parentage (aka paternity) action with the Superior Court. Within the action, both parents’ legal rights are confirmed. This includes legal custody, physical custody, and child support.
Paternity actions are governed by the Uniform Parentage Act (UPA). In California, the UPA starts with Family Code section 7600.
If a child’s parents are married, a paternity action is not needed. This is because paternity, child custody, and child support can all be handled within a divorce case. If a child is born during marriage, the husband is presumed to be the father. This is also true if a child is born within 300 days after the marriage is terminated.
A father wishing to dispute that he is the legal father can do so through a paternity action as well.
To start a paternity action in San Diego County, a Petition to Establish Parental Relationship is required. Either the mother or father can file this Petition. The Court also requires residence history for the child, which must be provided to the Court on the Declaration Under Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act form.