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Wheaton family law attorneysIn the state of Illinois, the legal rights of parents are based upon the recognition of their relationship with their children. For a mother, obviously, the presumption of a legal relationship is usually very simple. For a father, however, it may not be so easy, particularly if he is not married to the mother of the child. While paternity tests and court proceedings may sometimes be required in more complicated situations, such avenues can usually be avoided by means of a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity, or VAP.

VAP Basics

Under Illinois law, a VAP can be used to establish the legal parent-child relationship between a man and his son or daughter. It does not require genetic testing, court adjudication, or any other outside influences. Instead, the VAP is, as its name implies, a voluntary acceptance of parental rights and responsibilities.

To be considered valid, the VAP must be signed or otherwise authenticated by both the mother and the man seeking to establish paternity. It must also specifically reference the child regarding whom the man wishes to establish parental rights. The signing or authentication of the form must also be witnessed. The law in Illinois also requires the VAP to include language that ensures the signing parents understand that the form is the equivalent of courtroom adjudication and that, once signed, it can only be rescinded or challenged in very limited circumstances.

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child support, child visitation, establish child support, establishing paternity, paternity, separating unwed couples, Wheaton paternity attorneyHaving children is one of life's major decisions. Whether a couple decides to have a child before or after marriage, there are issues that can arise if the couple decides to later separate. These issues usually revolve around visitation, child custody and child support. Generally, these issues are handled the same as a couple going through divorce. However, there may be some complications in resolving these issues when it comes to unwed parents, depending on the couple's relationship.

Establishing Paternity 

The first step to dealing with custody and visitation of children born to an unwed couple is to determine paternity of the child. There are three ways in which paternity can be established in Illinois. Some of these ways may include a DNA test. Paternity can be established by:

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From our law office in Wheaton, IL the family law and civil litigation law attorneys of Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick and Mirabella, represent businesses and individual clients throughout the western suburbs of Chicago, Illinois including Wheaton, Naperville, Oak Brook, Glen Ellyn, Carol Stream, Lombard, Downers Grove, Burr Ridge, Lisle, Elmhurst, Oakbrook Terrace, Winfield, Woodridge, Warrenville and throughout DuPage, Kane and Kendall Counties.

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