Can a Mother Refuse a Court-Ordered Paternity Test?

In New York, when a child is born out of wedlock, the father is not automatically granted legal rights. In such cases, unmarried parents may need to go through paternity suits where the man may be required to take a DNA test to prove that he is the biological father of the child.

If you are facing a paternity issue, seek legal advice from the skilled paternity lawyers at Cammarata & De Meyer P.C. in Staten Island. Our experienced attorneys have handled numerous paternity cases and served clients in Staten Island and surrounding cities in New York. Contact us today for expert counsel and guidance.

What is a Paternity Test?

Determining paternity involves a test that confirms if a man is the biological father of a child. This test is typically conducted in a medical setting, court, or at a Child Support Office, where the parent and child will have their cheeks swabbed to compare their DNA. With a 99.9% accuracy rate, the results of the swab test are usually available in 4-6 weeks.

DNA, which stands for deoxyribonucleic acid, is the genetic material inherited from both parents. If the paternity test results show a negative match, the man will be legally confirmed as not the biological father of the child, with no parental rights or responsibilities.

Denying a Paternity Test: Can a Mother Refuse a Paternity Test?

Whether a mother can refuse a paternity test depends on the legal relationship between her and the child’s father. If the couple is married, the husband is presumed to be the father of the child, and a paternity test is not necessary. However, if the parents are unmarried and the mother has legal custody of the child, she can refuse a paternity test as the father has no legal rights to the child.

However, if a judge orders a paternity test, the mother is legally obligated to comply. Refusing to comply with a court order can result in the mother being held in contempt of court. It’s important to seek legal counsel in these situations to understand your rights and obligations.

What happens if the Paternity Test is Positive?

Verifying paternity provides a father with legal rights and responsibilities regarding his child, which can bring various advantages. These benefits may include:

  • Adding your name to your child’s birth certificate
  • Enrolling your child in health insurance under your plan
  • Designating your child as a beneficiary on financial accounts and allowing them to inherit from you
  • Receiving visitation rights and establishing financial support for your child through the court system
  • Providing your child with access to your medical history, allowing for better-informed medical decisions.

Ways to Get a Court-Ordered Paternity Test 

A court-ordered paternity test can be obtained through two ways – by filing a lawsuit in court or by contacting the Child Support Division of the Office of the Attorney General. In cases where both parents agree to take the paternity test and opt to go through the Attorney General’s Office, they may not have to appear in court.

Regardless of your situation, seeking guidance from a paternity lawyer in Southlake is highly recommended. An experienced attorney can help establish your parental rights and provide advice on the necessary steps to take.

A Staten Island Paternity Lawyer Placing Your Child First 

Cammarata & De Meyer P.C. recognizes the importance of establishing paternity in meeting the needs of your child. We will provide you with support throughout this challenging process. Would you like to know more? Please contact us today to schedule a consultation.