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Why seek a paternity test in Florida?

Families today look very different than they did just a generation ago. Today, it's very common to see families with divorced, unmarried or same-sex parents or for children to be raised in homes with adopted siblings, half siblings and step-siblings. Family structures are more modern than ever before, but there are traditional matters that can still affect them.

For example, you may be in a position where the paternity of your child needs to be legally established. Unmarried parents and/or those who have reason to question the biological father of a child may find themselves in need of a paternity test.

A paternity test is used to confirm or deny the biological relationship between a child and an alleged father. These DNA tests typically take a few weeks to complete and should be conducted by accredited laboratories.

It should be noted that in some cases, a test is not necessary. For instance, according to Florida laws, paternity is also established when parents are married or both sign a legal document acknowledging paternity. If there is reason to believe that a mother's husband or the presumed father is not the father of a child, however, a genetic test should be ordered. 

Too many people make the mistake of thinking confirming paternity is something to be sensationalized. However, the fact is that identifying a father through genetic testing or legal action is an important process for any parent who wants to protect and enforce their parental rights.

In order for parents to collect child support, seek custody and make decisions for a child legally, paternity must be confirmed. Legally identifying the biological father can also protect the connection between a child and his or her father and provide valuable information on a child's cultural and genetic background.

If you have questions or concerns about paternity orders or testing, it can be crucial that you discuss them with your attorney. Seeking a legal solution is not about stirring up drama; it is a remedy to protect the rights and best interests of parents, children and presumed fathers.

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