Paternity is a legal relationship between a father and his child. If the parents of the child were not married to each other when the child was conceived and/or born, the father has no legal relationship with the child until paternity has been legally established. In order to establish paternity in the Florida, a Petition to Determine Paternity has to be filed in a Florida Family Law Court.
At Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc., our Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediators recognize that paternity cases involve issues that go beyond just determining who the biological father of the child is. These issues include child support, time sharing, and parental responsibility. Establishing paternity is important because a mother is unable to obtain child support unless and until paternity has been established; while on the other hand, the father has no legal rights to visitation or even being informed about the day to day well-being of a child without such a legal finding.
Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. also understands that the dynamics between parents involved in a paternity case are often different and more unique than in a Florida Dissolution of Marriage case. In the typical divorce case, the parties dated, married, and lived together with the child or children as a family unit for some time period; so they each know how the other party acts as a parent. In a paternity action, the parties may not really know each other. The child may be result of getting together just once, dating for a few months, living together briefly, or living together as a family unit for a period of time.
When mediating any type of custody case, Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. has found that whether or not the parties trust each other can be one of the more difficult hurdles to overcome. When parties don’t really know each other, it can be hard for them to trust each other. What mother wants to send her child off to visit a person whom neither she nor her child knows? Although Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. is unable to make decisions for you, we are able to provide you with possible ways to put measures in place that will help ease your mind about the mediation agreement that you come up with respect to your child.
In Florida paternity cases, mediation can help reduce the adversarial nature of paternity proceedings when some of the issues discussed above are involved. Not only is mediation less expensive than a trial, it can also provide for a starting point for two parents who don’t really know each other to begin communicating in a positive manner with respect to their child.
Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. have neutral mediators whose main focus is to help you and the other party resolve a paternity action without the need for the stress and anxieties that can occur when there are Judges involved. If you have any questions about mediating your paternity case, please feel free to contact Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc.