Father’s Paternity

How Does a Father Establish Paternity in a Family Law Case?


What is Family Law?

Family law is a non-divorce case involving non-married couples where children are born between them. Many family law cases have to deal with parenting rights of children and the obligations that may follow.

Often in paternity cases, child support, custody, and visitation rights are the main issues being looked at but can span far beyond the few listed here. Family law can be complex and overwhelming, and the Attorney’s at Gateville Law Firm are ready to help make this process as fast and stress-free as possible.

Requirements for Establishing Paternity

Paternity is a legal relationship between a father and his child. In Illinois, if the mother is or was married when the child was conceived and/or born, her husband or ex-husband is legal is legally presumed to be the father of the child. However, if a mother is not married at the time the child was conceived and/or born, there are steps that must be taken to establish paternity.

Three Ways to Establish Paternity in Illinois

In Illinois, there are three ways to establish paternity. The first being, both parents complete, sign, and have a Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity (VAP) form witnessed and filed with the Department of Healthcare and Family Services.  The VAP is a legal document that is used for unwed parents when trying to establish paternity. Once this is completed and filed, it will be used to have the father’s name added to the child’s birth certificate.

The second way to establish Paternity is to have an Administrative Paternity Order established and entered by HFS’ Child Support Services.

The third and final way in establishing paternity would be to have an Order of Paternity that would need to be established and entered into court judicially.

Skilled Paternity and Father’s Rights Law Firm

What is a Paternity Test?

A paternity test compares the DNA of the child, mother, and alleged father to determine whether the man is, or is not, the biological father of a child. These tests are fairly simple and accurate and are taken by swabbing the inside of a person’s check.

Benefits and Downsides of Establishing Paternity

The benefits of establishing paternity can be vast. Establishing paternity gives a child rights to financial security, like social security benefits from a deceased or disabled parents and inheritance, as well as health and life insurance benefits.

Additionally, it may provide an opportunity for a child to obtain medical information.  Importantly, establishing paternity also allows the father to begin building a parental relationship whit his child. Further, other reasons include adding the father’s name to the birth certificate and protecting the parents’ rights.

Drawbacks of Establishing Paternity for a Father

There could also be some downsides of establishing paternity that parents should consider. Before establishing paternity, you may want to consider potential financial support and the obligations that go along with being responsible for a child, in addition to having custody and the allocation of parenting time.

Background of Gateville Law Firm

Skilled and Experienced Father’s Rights Law Firm

Navigating a family law matter on your own is rarely a good idea. The rules and procedures can be complicated and difficult to go through without expert legal support. Matters as important as Family Law and custody of your children are too critical to deny yourself the legal expertise and compassion that you deserve.

The Attorneys at Gateville Law Firm are committed to helping you resolve your Family Law matters with respect and timeliness. Unlike most firms, we are not a high-volume law firm and we remain dedicated to high efficiency and privacy as these matters can be deeply personal.  We may be reached at 630-780-1034 or via email at

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