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Not the Father – Can I Take My Name Off of the Birth Certificate?

 Posted on April 01, 2019 in Paternity

At the time a child is born in Illinois, the parents' names are added to the child's birth certificate. The mother's name is always added, and, if the mother is married, the man to whom she is married is considered to be the father and is added to the child's birth certificate as well. What's more, if a child's parents are not married, both can sign a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity, which also can be used to add the father's name to the birth certificate.

Of course, there are some cases when a man's name is added to a birth certificate in error; there may be a presumption (based on marriage) that the man is the father, but in truth, the man is not the biological father. If you are a man whose name was added to a birth certificate erroneously, here's what you need to know about removing your name from a birth certificate.

Why You Want to Remove Your Name

If a man is not a child's biological father but is named as such on a birth certificate, the man has legal parental rights. In addition to providing the father with the right to petition the court for custody of or visitation with a child, there also are legal obligations associated with paternity. A man whose name is on a birth certificate may be asked to pay child support, or otherwise support a child financially, including through the man's health insurance, Social Security benefits, veterans' benefits, and more. Rejecting paternity and removing one's name from a birth certificate will legally dismiss these obligations.

How to Remove Your Name from a Birth Certificate

If the presumed father is not the child's actual biological father, the father (who is married to the child's mother) must sign the Illinois Denial of Parentage form. If there is any dispute about who is a child's father, genetic testing may be requested by any party and others may be required to consent to genetic testing via a court order.

To change a birth record in Illinois, you must contact the Illinois Department of Public Health and complete an Affidavit and Certificate of Correction Request. The Denial of Parentage form will also need to be provided, as well a court order of paternity if the actual biological father has been named.

Working with a Lawyer Can Help

If you do not believe you are the biological father of a child, you may be confused about your rights and what steps to take. If the mother of the child is in agreement that you are not the father, you may both sign the Illinois Denial of Parentage form and then submit the appropriate documents to the Department of Public Health in order to change the child's birth certificate. If there is a dispute, however, you may need a court order to get genetic testing and make a declaration you are indeed not the father.

At the law offices of Fay, Farrow & Associates, P.C., we can help. We know how important it is that the appropriate father's name is on a child's birth certificate and want to protect your rights. Please reach our Naperville family law attorneys today for your initial consultation

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