What are my legal rights to my daughter? 8 Answers as of January 28, 2014

I was just informed that my daughter who is almost 2 is not mine based on a paternity test the mother did without me knowing. We were together when she was born but not married and since broke up. I am on her birth certificate and have supported her since birth. Will I have any rights to my daughter?

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Ronald Main & Associates | Tracian M. Laignel
In Oklahoma you would be considered the presumed father because 1) you are on the birth certificate, and 2) you have held the child out as your own daughter and have provided for her. Therefore, under Oklahoma law you are the father. There is a statute of limitations of two years for anyone to come forward and challenge your position as the father of the child. Once the child reaches the age of 2, your status as presumed father cannot be challenged. Therefore, the child is your daughter and you have rights as to custody, visitation and support. I would suggest filing a paternity action in your local county court wherein the court will establish that you are the father of the child. Further, visitation and custody will be established as well as financial support of the child. In Oklahoma pursuant to Title 10 Section 80 of the Oklahoma Statutes you may be held responsible for your proportionate share of the birth of the child. So, if you have receipts for supporting the child and paying for any type of prenatal care, I would hang on to those receipts. Going forward, I would keep track of any and all money spent on the child.
Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
Replied: 1/28/2014
James M. Chandler | James M. Chandler
You could file a paternity action and request custody or visitation order from the court.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/24/2014
The Law Office of James P Peterson
The Law Office of James P Peterson | James P Peterson
If you act right away you may have your rights terminated. If you delay it will be too late to have your rights terminated. Right now you have all the rights of a parent. If you want specific visitation or custody rights then you might wait a bit longer after it is too late for the mother to deny your paternity and then file a suit to gain those specific rights.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 1/24/2014
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
The court may consider you a presumed father or an important person for continued visitation and custody with the child in light of your past relationship with this child. This is a complicated area of the law. Please meet with an experienced family law attorney to explore your legal options.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/22/2014
Diane l. Berger | Diane L. Berger
I don't know how a paternity test could have been done without your participation. Ask to see a the test results.
Answer Applies to: Nebraska
Replied: 1/22/2014
    John Russo | John Russo
    You are the legal father and her DNA test is not only irrelevant, it is inadmissible in any action she may try to bring, as long as you object.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 1/22/2014
    Barr, Jones & Associates LLP
    Barr, Jones & Associates LLP | Andrew Brasse
    If no parenting time rights were ever established, it will likely be hard to get them set up. However, anyone can file a petition for visitation. The court will need to see what is in the child's best interests. If the court decides your relationship with the child is in her/his best interests, they could grant you time.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 1/22/2014
    Peters Law, PLLC
    Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
    As long as the bio dad doesn't show up, you are the father. However, if he does and asks for a paternity test, you may lose any right to the child.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 1/22/2014
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