Just because you are not married to the mother of your child does not mean that you do not wish to play a role in your child’s life. Unfortunately, in order to legally gain parental rights, you must take certain steps under the law in the state of Florida. In some cases, gaining legal paternity can be relatively simple and will requiring signing a form and filing it with the state. If the mother of your child tries to fight against you paternity claim, however, you may find yourself facing a legal battle in court. One recent case that was resolved shows how difficult some paternity cases may become.
Jason Patric Wins Paternity Case
Jason Patric is an actor who had been fighting for legal paternity rights to his biological son for two years. When Patric’s former girlfriend wanted to have a child, he agreed to offer his sperm for her to use for in vitro fertilization (IVF), which resulted in the birth of a son. Patric was not listed on his son’s birth certificate and he and the mother did not sign a parenting agreement. However, Patric states that the two parents rekindled their relationship and that he participated in raising the boy. When the relationship again soured, Patric states that the mother refused to allow him to be in contact with her son.
Patric filed a paternity claim that resulted in a battle in court. The mother claimed that Patric was never involved in the boy’s life and that he was verbally abusive. The lower court originally ruled that Patric had no parental rights because the court decided that he was merely a “sperm donor.” On appeal, Patric won the right to a retrial and this time the court ruled in his favor. He was granted parental rights to his son and stated he plans to seek custody and visitation rights.
In 2013, the Florida Supreme Court ruled that an egg donor had legal parental rights. In that case, one woman provided eggs and her same-sex partner carried the child. After the relationship broke up, the birth mother took the daughter to Australia, which led to the mother whose eggs were donated to seek parental rights. The case led the Florida Supreme Court to rule that Florida’s Assisted Reproductive Technology Statute did not apply to cases in which it was clearly intended that the egg or sperm donor would have a role in the child’s life, such as in many same-sex couples. The law still stands in relation to anonymous donors, however.
Contact a Boca Raton Family Lawyer for Assistance
If you are facing a paternity suit, you do not want to risk losing your parental rights to spend time and build a relationship with your child. Instead, you should always consult with an experienced family law attorney in Boca Raton who has a thorough understanding of Florida laws and how they will relate to your case. Call the office of Alan R. Burton for all of your family law needs today.