Whereas divorces have many different legal issues that need to be resolved between couples, establishing paternity has a more narrow focus. Fathers in Missouri often establish legal paternity to get child custody, child visitation or to make child support payments. Whatever the case, establishing paternity is the first step to legally become responsible for one's children.
Over time, the importance of establishing paternity has increased, as couples are realizing the importance of a father figure in a child's life, and fathers increasingly want to play an important role in their offspring's development. It also provides security for children in that they can take their father's surname and receive benefits and health insurance from him. Even where a father is not able to play an active role, child support payments can help mothers provide a better future for their children.
However, in addition to the legal component is the all-important emotional component. It can be frustrating trying to come to terms with the new roles parents play after paternity is established. We understand the challenges, both financial and emotional, posed by the process and try to not only prepare clients for the emotional rollercoasters they are about to embark upon but also to guide them through the process as well.
Lawyers in our firm have tremendous experience in family law and are familiar with arguments and strategies to make certain aspects of paternity run smoothly, such as legally changing surnames. Each case is different, and we take our time understanding what our client's goals are, and work with them toward achieving those goals. We represent both mothers and fathers In paternity actions. For more information, visit our webpage.