If you are an unwed mother or father in the state of Arizona, you may or may not be aware of the state’s stance on paternity and parental rights. It is critical to understand the nuances of Arizona paternity laws to ensure your rights as a parent are preserved, as well as to ensure the best possible upbringing for your child. In today’s post, we will take a closer look at what paternity is in Arizona, as well as the state laws that pertain to this legal matter.

John Dorris is a Tucson divorce lawyer who also represents parents who want to take advantage of the legal protections afforded to them under the law. If you have questions about your parental rights, call our office at 520-622-4866 today or request your free consultation online now.

A Closer Look at Paternity in Arizona

What is Paternity?

Paterninty is the most basic word that defines fatherhood. However, in the legal sense of the word, the definition carries must more weight. When Arizona courts make a ruling pertaining to who a child’s father is, that father then becomes legally and financially responsible for the child. There are times when paternity is presumed, but there are others where the rightful father of a child is not so clear. In the instances where paternity is not presumed, the Arizona courts can step in to help.

What Does the Arizona Law Say About Paternity?

The Arizona Revised Statutes (ARS) provide a clear interpretation of presumed paternity. For example, ARS §25-814 states that a man is presumed to be the father of a child if:

  • He and the child’s mother were married at any time during the 10 months immediately preceding the child’s birth.
  • The child is born within 10 months of the marriage being terminated, either by divorce, death, annulment, or legal separation.
  • Genetic testing provides at least 95-percent probability of paternity.
  • An unwed mother and father sign the child’s birth certificate.
  • An unwed mother and father sign a statement that is notarized or witnessed which acknowledges paternity.

In instances where paternity cannot be assumed, the state courts or one of the child’s parents can file a motion to legally establish paternity. There are many benefits of doing so, including financial and relational ones. Regardless of whether paternity is presumed or it needs to be legally established, a working with a parental rights attorney will ensure that important documents are submitted in a timely manner and that the proper legal procedures are followed to preserve your rights.

Tucson Parental Rights Attorney

Whether you need a Tucson divorce attorney or a parental rights attorney, John Dorris and team are here for you. If you are an unwed mother or father in Arizona, it is usually in your best interests to legally establish paternity. The legal process that you must go through to do so can be difficult to navigate on your own. Hiring a skilled Tucson family law attorney who is well-versed in Arizona paternity laws can help the process go more smoothly. Contact our Tucson law firm for assistance with your parental rights case today, and be sure to check back for our next post in which we will answer a few frequently asked questions about Arizona paternity.