It happens. You’ve had more than one partner in a short amount of time, and you find yourself pregnant. It’s normal and natural that you’d like to know who your baby’s father is. There are a variety of reasons, in fact, that you should know. Even if it may not seem important to you today, someday it will matter to you, your baby and the father.
Why Paternity Is Important
There are a number of benefits to establishing paternity. For example, paternity testing may give your child access to things like social security benefits, veteran’s benefits and inheritance or estate benefits. In addition, it will give you a medical history for your child, which will help to identify future health problems and to make sure your child receives the health services she needs.
What Does Paternity Testing Cost?
Paternity testing can vary in price from around $400 to over $2,000. It depends on where you live and the kind of test you want to have done. Pick a paternity testing company that is accredited by the AABB if you want to have the most reliable results.
How Does the Process Work?
If there’s a question on who your baby’s father is, get testing as soon as possible. Some states will require you to fill out an Acknowledgement of Paternity form at the hospital if you are not married to the baby’s father. In other states, if you are married when your baby is born your husband will be the legal father of the baby unless paternity is proven to a court at a later time.
After the Acknowledgement of Paternity is signed, you may have a certain amount of time to request DNA testing to establish whether or not the father really is the baby’s father.
When a baby is born without a father listed, that baby’s rights are not completely protected. It’s important to get a test done before your baby is born, if possible, so that your baby has access to all of the benefits due to him.