Paternity/Parental Rights

When parents are not married to each other, the legal rights to parenting should be established.  One of the parents can file a Complaint to Establish Parental Relationship and serve the other parent.  The parent who files is asking the court to determine legal parentage.  If the other parent acknowledges that he or she is the biological parent of the child, the court enters a Judgment of Parental Relationship which establishes legal parentage for the child.

The parents can also use this legal instrument to request mediation for custody and visitation issues.  The legal test for custody and visitation is the same for all children without regard to whether the parents are married.  For more information on the custody and visitation process, please refer to the page on this website.