Acknowledgment of Paternity Helps Unmarried Fathers
Video Transcribed: Ever heard of the old expression that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure? My name is Brian L. Jackson. I am a Tulsa father’s rights attorney with Dads.Law and I’d like to talk to you today about the idea of preventing a proverbial legal migraine before it happens by taking some common-sense steps.
Today’s topic is going to be about the acknowledgment of paternity in Tulsa. So this one’s going out to those of you who are unmarried fathers. An acknowledgment of paternity is basically a form you can sign at the birth of your child or after the birth of your child where you are voluntarily acknowledging you are the father and the mother is voluntarily acknowledging you’re the father.
Now what that does basically is it sets up a presumption that you are in fact Dad. It does not confer rights by itself. But an important thing to know about that form is if you sign one, well first of all if you are Dad and you think you’re Dad or you know you’re Dad and you’re not married, sign the form. I mean at least if your intention is to have rights.
Secondly, save a copy of that form. Keep it on hand, and I’m going to tell you why. First of all, when you go to court to establish your rights, that form will make life a lot easier for you because you don’t have to go through things like genetic testing to prove you’re Dad.
But also if you ever get in a situation where you need to pursue emergency action against Mom, and this happens more frequently than I think a lot of you guys would like to think about, that form confers your standing, that is your right to sue on an emergency basis to get your child out of a bad situation.
Without it, you’re talking about a big pain in the ass, to put it mildly, and you may find your hands tied. Because your options become much more limited. You might be able to pursue guardianship or otherwise, you’re going to have to try to get a copy of that form from vital records, and if you have never signed one, then you’re really screwed, and so is your child.
So first of all, if you are Dad or are planning to be Dad, sign the form, and secondly, if you are Dad or once you’ve signed said form, save it, and I’m going to add thirdly and this will segue into my next video when I start recording it, don’t wait around until things get bad between you and Mom to establish your rights, and we’ll talk about that in my next video on avoiding legal migraines. If you have questions about this issue, please feel free to get ahold of us at Dads.Law, where dads are not disposable. Thanks.