Paternity & Custody

Fort Myers Uncontested Paternity and Custody Lawyer 

Serving Families in Lee and Charlotte Counties

What Is Paternity?

Paternity is the legal recognition of a man as a child’s father. Once established, paternity can give a father rights and responsibilities, which could include child support, visitation, and decision-making power concerning a child’s education, health, and more.  

What Is Custody?

Custody in Florida is synonymous with parental responsibility. When a parent has custody of a child, they have the authority to make decisions regarding a child’s upbringing and welfare. Custody can be sole or shared. 

Paternity and custody are significantly related because if a child’s parents are unmarried, the biological father has no legal right to custody unless he establishes paternity. 

Uncontested Paternity Cases in Florida

One of the biggest things that separates uncontested paternity cases from those that are contested is the need for courts to take action. There are several methods of establishing paternity without contest. 

These can include:

  1. Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity (VAP): This is a legal document that both the mother and father can sign at the hospital when their child is born, or even at a later date. Signing a VAP establishes legal paternity and grants the rights and responsibilities that come with it. 
  2. Legitimation: This process allows a father to obtain legal parental rights through marriage.
  3. Administrative Order: Our Fort Myers paternity and custody lawyer can help parents and their children obtain genetic testing that proves a father’s paternity. With a test that shows a match between the DNA of the father and child, we can seek an administrative order.

If you have questions about navigating your uncontested paternity case in Fort Myers and whether any of these methods would be right for you, contact Daniels Law, P.A. today. 

Call (239) 766-6510 or send us a message online. We are proud to serve clients in Lee and Charlotte Counties.

The Rights that Paternity Grants 

Establishing paternity gives a father the right to shared custody, which allows them to have a say in important decisions that concern a child’s education, healthcare, religion, and extracurricular activities. Additionally, it makes it possible to obtain visitation rights. 

For the biological mothers of children, establishing paternity can be a huge step toward obtaining support. Once paternity has been proven, a father can be legally obligated to provide financial support for things such as food, housing, and healthcare. Paternity also gives a child the right to inherit assets from a father’s estate

What to Know About Uncontested Child Custody Cases in Florida

Divorcing spouses can establish a custody agreement without the intervention of a judge. This can be advantageous for several reasons. First and foremost, it gives parents total control of the terms of the agreement. Additionally, it can allow parents to settle a custody case in less time than those that are contested. All it takes to establish a custody agreement in this manner is for both parties to work together to develop and agree on its terms, then have a Florida judge ratify it. 

The above process is straightforward, but it is not without complications. When making any legally binding agreement—especially one that concerns custodial rights—it is important to consult with an attorney to avoid agreeing to terms that could become problematic in the future or compromise a parent’s rights. Not only that, but the counsel of a trusted lawyer can be useful during negotiations. 

How to File for Visitation Rights in Florida

Once you have established paternity in an uncontested custody situation, the next critical step is to file for visitation rights in Florida. The process begins with preparing the necessary legal documentation, which typically involves filing a Petition to Establish Parenting Time Plan. This petition must be submitted to the family court in the county where the child resides.

When filing for visitation rights in Florida, it's essential to clearly outline your desired visitation schedule and demonstrate how it aligns with the child's best interests. The court will consider factors such as the child's age, health, emotional ties with each parent, and the parents' ability to cooperate when determining the visitation arrangement. It’s also important to include any existing agreements or evidence that supports your ability to provide a stable and nurturing environment for the child.

Additionally, parents seeking visitation rights should be prepared to attend a court hearing where a judge will review the petition. It's advisable to consult with an experienced family law attorney to ensure that all paperwork is correctly filed and that your case is effectively presented.

For those seeking full custody in Florida, the process will involve additional considerations and documentation, demonstrating why such an arrangement is in the child's best interests. Hiring a lawyer skilled in paternity and custody cases can help navigate the complexities of the legal system and increase the likelihood of a favorable outcome.

Turn to Daniels Law, P.A.

Whether you need to establish paternity or are attempting to make a custody agreement, turn to Daniels Law, P.A. Even when uncontested, these matters can be complex. Let our experienced team assist you in establishing parental rights or securing the support that you and your child deserve. To schedule a free consultation, all you have to do is reach out. Our uncontested paternity and custody lawyer handles most cases virtually, which makes it convenient to get personalized guidance. 

Call (239) 766-6510 today or connect with us online

    "Theresa was knowledgeable and spoke in terms that were understandable... definitely a five-star lawyer."

    - Diane S.

    "She was there early on the day of the adoption and was very friendly."

    - Victoria M.

    "Communication was constant and straightforward, and follow-up was fantastic."

    - Christopher B.

    "Working with Daniels Law was a breeze! People normally say the adoption process is a hassle but thanks to Theresa, I can’t relate."

    - Shantia E.

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