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Minnesota program designed to help establish paternity

The Department of Human Services of Minnesota (DHS) has set up the Recognition of Parentage program.  As over 30 percent of children are born out of wedlock in Minnesota every year, it is thought to be essential to establish the parentage of the child at the earliest possible convenience.  The aim of the program is so that the single mother and child can receive child support payments from the father, but it also serves the purposes of the father in that he can be granted legal rights as pertains to the child as well.

One particular hospital in Stillwater has received recognition from the DHS for apparently establishing paternity for close to 14,700 children.  Once parentage is established in this manner, the father's name can then be placed upon the child's birth certificate.  In the majority of cases, the name of the father is established before the child is even discharged from the hospital.  This is done by the signing of the Recognition of Parentage document.

It is important for fathers to have paternity established in order for the father to have custody and parenting time rights by law.  Even the father's name upon a birth certificate will not guarantee that they will be granted full custody and parenting time rights as the father of the child.

Whatever the circumstances, it is almost always in the best interest of the child to have full involvement of both parents.  In certain cases there will be exceptions where involvement of one of the parents could actually endanger the welfare of the child, but thankfully this is a rare circumstance.  Anyone with questions about the establishing of paternity may wish to speak to an attorney from Minnesota that understands how paternity is established in a court of law.

Source: Stillwater Gazette, "Lakeview honored among hospitals in state honored by DHS," June 19, 2013

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