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The Law Offices of W. Douglas McKeague The Law Offices of W. Douglas McKeague
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Parentage and Paternity Lawyer in Orange County

A paternity action is the legal process by which a man is legally declared to be a minor child’s father. When a man wants to claim his paternal rights of a child or seek to challenge a mother’s claim that he is the father, he may do so by filing a petition with the court. For either process, it is highly recommended that you secure the guidance and representation of a skilled family lawyer.

Our Orange County paternity lawyer can help you with all the necessary paperwork and steps required to achieve your goals. Call today to learn more: (714) 888-4830!

The state of California will assume that a man is a child’s father if one of the following is true:

  • The man is married to the child’s mother
  • The man is living with the child’s mother and lives as though he is the child’s father

Filing a paternity action is unnecessary in either of these cases. However, if neither of these circumstances exist, a child’s mother or a man who believes he is a child’s father may still pursue legal action to establish parentage.

If an unmarried couple is in agreement that the man is the child’s father, the mother and father may sign a “voluntary declaration of paternity” after the child is born. If there was no such mutual agreement, a mother may file a “paternity action” with the court to establish a man’s paternity, or, a man seeking parental rights may do the same. Alternatively, the Child Support Services Department may bring a Judgment of Paternity to court to establish paternity. An adoption agency may also pursue this legal action.

In response to either action, a judge may request that a genetic test be performed. If a man’s paternity is established, the court will oversee decisions regarding whether or not—and in what way—he will be granted custody rights, visitation rights, and/or child support responsibilities.

Turn to an Experienced Paternity Lawyer Today

At The Law Offices of W. Douglas McKeague, our Orange County family lawyer has more than 4 decades of experience assisting individuals with a wide variety of family law issues.

We are here to provide compassionate legal counsel and personalized attention for your case. Whether you are a mother seeking to establish paternity for the sake of securing child support, or if you are a father who would like to be a part of your child’s life, we know how to represent your best interests.

Contact us today to discuss your situation in a free consultation with our experienced paternity lawyer in Orange County.


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"Doug ensured that my interests were protected, my integrity preserved. His warm, calm and professional demeanor instilled trust and confidence."

Doug ensured that my interests were protected, my integrity preserved. His warm, calm and professional demeanor instilled trust and confidence.

- Lorre L.