Single mothers are often confronted with whether they would like the father’s name on the birth certificate. If you did not list the father’s name on the birth certificate immediately after the birth, however, there are ways to add his name later in the state of Florida. Keep reading to learn more and don’t hesitate to consult an Orlando paternity attorney for more information.
Can I Add a Father to a Birth Certificate Later?
Technically, yes, you can add the father’s name to the birth certificate later, but only if certain conditions are met.
In this case, the mother needed to be unmarried at the time of the birth, and no other person must be listed as the father on the birth record. If you’ve met these conditions, then you need notarized signatures from both parents or two witnesses for each parent. They can be the same two witnesses.
There is a $20 fee associated with this transaction as well.
How to Add a Father to a Birth Certificate in Florida
Paternity rights in Florida depend on whether the father was married to the mother when the child was born. This means that if the parents were unmarried at the time of the birth, then the father currently has no legal relationship with the child. In this case, you might want to add the father to the birth certificate later.
Start by having the father fill out a paternity form. This is the form that will allow his name to be added and will therefore establish a legal relationship. When the mother signs this form too, it signals that both parents are the child’s birth parents.
If you want to cancel this form for some reason, that can be done with a court hearing within 60 days of signing.
Submit a copy of the original birth certificate to the Department of Vital Records. When you do this, you’ll also pay the fee. From here, you’ll hand in the paternity form.
Without the form
Let’s say that the father is refusing to sign the paternity form, but the mother wants to add him for child support or travel.
In this case, you can still add the child’s father to the birth certificate after the fact. However, the mother will need to go through the courts to get a court judgment establishing paternity instead.
Establishing Paternity in Different Situations
There are many situations when it comes to establishing paternity:
If the parents are married, this is an easy process. Neither parent needs to do anything to establish paternity. The hospital will complete the paperwork.
If the mother is married but doesn’t list the father, this will need to be addressed in court.
In this situation, the father must fill out the paternity form with a notary present. This is an easy way to establish paternity when the parents are not married and can be done right at the hospital.
The hospital can send this form in right after the birth. It’s important to remember that you cannot do this if the mother is married to someone else.
The husband will be the legal father if the parents marry later, although you still need to add the father to the birth certificate. This can be done through the Affirmation of Common Child Born in Florida form. When applying for your marriage license, this form should be provided to you.
Unmarried Even After Child’s Birth
The father can choose to sign a paternity form if the parents stay unmarried later, as long as the child is under 18. Again, this cannot be done if the mother was married if the child was born.
You will have to establish paternity in court if it cannot be established in any other way. The judge will determine if the alleged father is the father, and if he does not appear in court, the court has other options. They may order a genetic test or choose to make him the father by default.
There are multiple ways to establish paternity in Florida, corresponding to a variety of situations. If you would like to place the father’s name on the birth certificate, though, there are many options available to you depending on the mother’s situation at birth. Call us if you need any further advice.