Texas Adjudicate Parentage Proceedings Are Used to Determine If a Person Is a Child's Mother or Father

What Is an Adjudicate Parentage in Texas?

Adjudicate Parentage in TexasUsually, it is pretty clear who a child's parents are - but not always. Sometimes, it takes a court to make the final determination of the identity of one of a child's parents. In Texas, an Adjudicate Parentage proceeding is used to ask a court to make this decision. The Uniform Parentage Act (Texas Family Code Chapter 160, sections 160.601-160.636) provides the procedures for filing an Adjudicate Parentage action. Furthermore, this law is usually used to determine the identity of a child's father.

Who Can File for Adjudicate Parentage in Texas?

  • The Uniform Parentage Act permits Adjudicate Parentage actions to be filed by The child or his/her representative;
  • The potential father whose paternity is to be determined;
  • The child's mother;
  • Support enforcement agencies;
  • Adoption and child placement agencies;
  • Those who agree to be the parents of a child born by assisted reproduction; and
  • The representatives of any deceased individual who could have brought an Adjudica Parentage action while living.

What Is the Process for Filing for Adjudicate Parentage in Texas?

Filing an Adjudicate Parentage action in TexasThe first step in filing an Adjudicate Parentage action is to file a completed "Petition to Adjudicate Parentage" with the appropriate court. The law has several criteria for how long someone can wait to bring an Adjudicate Parentage action.

Furthermore, special circumstances can factor into the time period.  Moreover, Adjudicate Parentage actions can also be submitted before the child is born.

The proceeding should include both the mother and the potential father.  It doesn't matter which party brings about the Adjudicate Parentage action.  Furthermore, once the party receives the petition, the other parties will then have to respond to the petition.

Learn More About Adjudicate Parentage Order

Adjudicate Parentage orderThe final step will be a hearing before a judge. In determining whether or not to issue an Adjudicate Parentage order as requested by the petition, the judge will consider evidence submitted by the parties, including the history of the relationship of the parties. Also, it is common in Adjudicate Parentage proceedings for courts to review the results of genetic testing.   However, the judge can also elect to completely ignore the results of genetic testing if doing so is in the best interest of the child.

If the Court issues an Adjudicate Parentage order, the person determined to be a child's parent will obtain all the rights and responsibilities of being a parent.  Furthermore, this includes custody/visitation and support obligations. Moreover, based on unique circumstances, the judge has the right to detail the responsibilities of the adjudicated parent.

The Texas Family Code Chapter 160, Uniform Parentage Act, is the statute that covers the acknowledgment of Paternity and adjudication of parentage.

Need Assistance with Texas Adjudicate Parentage Proceedings or Child's Identity?

America Family Law Center logoAre you considering filing a "Petition to Adjudicate Parentage"?   Do you need assistance with the proceeding?  Contact America Family Law Center or call 713-239-5200. Also, you may contact the Texas Lawyer Referral Services or call 713-510-7100.

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