Establishing Paternity in West Virginia
Charleston Family Law and Paternity Attorney

The law office of Julia Shalhoup in Charleston, West Virginia, provides legal services to clients in establishing paternity and contesting it. Family lawyer Julia Shalhoup is experienced and knowledgeable about the paternity laws of West Virginia and can obtain a court order that establishes your paternity of the child or defend you if you believe you have been wrongly identified as the father.

Orders for DNA Paternity Testing

Before DNA testing, courts recognized paternity based on marriage to the mother, affidavits, or a mother’s claim of exclusive sexual contact with the putative father. Now, if a man wishes to establish beyond doubt whether he is the father of a child, or if a woman needs to establish paternity to obtain child support, DNA paternity testing is the preferred method.

Either the father or mother of a child can obtain a court order for paternity testing if the court allows it. Paternity test results are considered definitive proof in every court in the United States. A court order then establishes paternal rights and responsibilities, including child custody, visitation, child support, and decision-making authority in regard to your child.

Paternity Contests

Julia Shalhoup can also represent your interests if you are disputing your paternity of a child. A paternity dispute can arise for several reasons, including the presumption of a husband’s paternity of children conceived during the marriage, inaccurate paternity affidavits, or claims of paternity fraud.

Child Support

Once paternity is established, either the custodial parent or the non-custodial parent—either the father or the mother—can obtain an ongoing child support obligation order. This serves the purpose of providing for your child as well as ensuring that all legal obligations are met. Additionally, child support establishes you as a parent who plays an active role in your child’s life.

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