Paternity more than a legal term

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in High Asset Divorce on Monday, February 3, 2020.

The importance of a father’s role in a child’s life is well-established, but recent research suggests that fathers who actively participate in the lives of their children provide benefits that go beyond parenting. When a child is born in Missouri, establishing paternity is an important way to ensure that fathers can be involved with their child’s future. A new study suggests that paternal involvement is far more important than a few weekend visitations a month.

Researchers from a leading university say that a father being involved during the pregnancy and afterwards can go a long way toward helping the baby and the mother. Studies suggest that women who give birth with no father in the picture often have a more difficult time dealing with serious matters like postpartum depression or making unhealthy choices. Statistics show that an unmarried woman who has not acknowledged paternity is far more likely to engage in potentially harmful activities like drinking alcohol or smoking during her pregnancy.

Having a new baby can feel overwhelming. Even if the parents are not together in a romantic relationship, research indicates that having a father in the picture can provide vital support for mothers and children. After paternity has been formally established, a father can have the backing of the legal system when he seeks to exercise his parental rights. In situations where paternity is unclear or disputed, the matter will need to be addressed before fathers’ rights issues or child support petitions can be pursued.

If a Missouri resident is interested in establishing paternity or filing a petition for custody, visitation or other family law matter, it makes good sense to talk with a family law attorney. Being well-prepared for court proceedings can help the process go smoothly and avoid unnecessary delays. Clearly, fathers play an important role in the lives of their children, and with the law behind them, fathers can look forward to raising their children with love and support.

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