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Paternity is the establishment of parental rights and obligations when the mother and father are not married. In Indiana, this can be done three ways. The first way is by the completions of a paternity affidavit by both parents completing an Indiana Department of Heath Paternity Affidavit within 72 hours of the child’s birth. This form is made available at the hospital at the same time that the birth certificate is completed. The second way is to complete the affidavit at the local health department in the jurisdiction where the child was born. 60 days later, the paternity is established. The third way is by petitioning a court to establish paternity.

Establishing paternity provides the child with a relationship with a father, entitles the child to be covered under the father’s insurance and also entitles the child to inheritance rights and social security benefits if the father becomes disabled or passes away before the child is 18. Studies also show that a child who has both parents in their lives thrive better than when there is only one parent involved.

The father benefits by ensuring that he has rights concerning his child, including the right to establish a relationship protected by the court, including the possibility of custody and visitation (parenting time).

The mother benefits by having someone share parental responsibility, being able to have a little break during visitation by the father and receiving child support (assuming that the father is not the custodial parent).

Mr. Padove is currently accepting Paternity cases and can be reached at 219-836-2200 or toll free at 877-446-5294.

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