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Elgin, Illinois Paternity Lawyer

kane county paternity lawyer

Experienced Parentage Attorney Serving Kane County, McHenry County, and DeKalb County

When the parents of a child are not married, their legal rights and obligations for that child must be established in court, which is commonly referred to as a "paternity case." Until there has been some legal determinations, a man who is alleged to be the father of a child has no legal obligation to pay child support or other expenses for that child. Similarly, the mother is not required to provide the father with any type of visitation (now known as parenting time) with the child.

Without having established rules regarding the care and well-being of the child, life for unmarried parents can be extremely frustrating and stressful. In order to ensure that your legal rights and the best interests of your child are protected, you should consult with an experienced paternity lawyer as soon as possible. At Canning Law Offices, we have decades of experience assisting mothers and fathers with parentage matters and the subsequent child-related legal issues. We fight to protect our clients' rights and the rights and interests of the children involved.

Establishing Parentage

In most situations, paternity cases start by one of the two parents filing a written petition in court asking the judge to formally establish their legal rights. However, before a judge can address the issues of custody (now know as parental responsibilities), visitation (now known as parenting time), medical insurance, daycare costs, etc., the court must determine whether the man is, in fact, the biological father of that child. In cases brought by the mother, the alleged father will frequently admit he is the biological father while, in other cases, he will deny the same. Similarly, in cases brought by the alleged father, the mother may deny he is the biological father of the child. If there is a dispute as to whether or not the man is, in fact, the biological father, the court will order parties to submit to DNA testing.

Once the issue of paternity itself has been resolved, the court will focus on the remaining legal issues. Mothers and fathers of children born outside a marriage normally have the same legal rights and obligations as the parents of children born during a marriage. This includes, but is not limited to, the right to be allocated certain parental responsibilities (formally known as custody), the right to have parenting time (formally know as visitation) with the minor child, the obligation to contribute to expenses such as child support, daycare expenses, health insurance premiums, uncovered medical expenses, extracurricular activities, college expenses, etc. and the right to have input in the way the child is raised.

Resolving these various issues can frequently be complicated, contentious, and stressful. Therefore, it is important that you hire a paternity attorney who not only has the knowledge but the experience to aggressively fight for yours and your child's rights. Our firm has decades of experience handling these matters, and we are well-versed in the changes made to these laws in 2016. We use our extensive experience and knowledge of the law to fight for our clients both in and out of court.

If you are seeking to resolve questions of parentage for your child or to establish your parental rights, contact Canning Law Offices at 847-742-0420 to schedule a free consultation. We will examine the circumstances of your case, answer your questions, and provide the best advice possible for your legal options. We work with clients throughout Elgin, South Elgin, Gilberts, St. Charles, Hampshire, Carpentersville, Algonquin, and the surrounding communities.

The way to choose a paternity attorney to represent you is the same way you would select a divorce lawyer. For more information on choosing an attorney for your case, see our article on "How to Select a Divorce Lawyer."