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What should I know about establishing paternity in CO?

When it comes to your family, taking the appropriate steps towards establishing a child’s paternity can achieve many goals. Accordingly, Colorado families must have access to the right information to ensure they can navigate the process with relative ease.

As demonstrated by the Colorado Department of Human Services, determining paternity affords both tangible and intangible benefits to all involved. If you are a father, it can facilitate a stronger emotional connection, which is integral for creating a safe and secure home environment for your child. From a financial perspective, children will have access to essential monetary support necessary to cover essential expenses. They will also be privy to important information regarding their family’s medical background in order to provide comprehensive health care.

You should also be aware that establishing paternity and requesting child support are two distinct procedures. In the event that there are disputes about a child’s paternity, the true father must be identified in order for a child to receive support down the line. In this case, there are a few different methods you can utilize.

If you are not currently married to the mother of your child, you must first complete a document referred to as an Acknowledgment of Paternity. After completing this form, you will have 60-day period before you are considered to be the child’s father in the eyes of the law. Without this documentation you will be unable to include your name on a child’s birth certificate. In the event that an Acknowledgment of Paternity has not been signed, the court must make a decision on the matter. In most instances the ability to establish paternity is no longer available after a child turns 18.  

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