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Paternity Lawyers in Utah

Paternity Lawyers in Utah

While most people living in Utah and other places around the country may assume that identifying paternity plays a large role in resolving many family law issues, that’s not always the case. Legislation concerning child custody can vary from state to state, and sometimes standards do not always reflect current issues. One recent case illustrates how previously established laws affect modern cases, and highlights the complicated role paternity plays in some custody disputes.


The case in question took place in Michigan, and revolves around the issue of parental versus paternity rights. In 1956, it was established that a man didn’t necessarily have to be the biological father of a child to be responsible for that child in Michigan. As long as the man was married to the child’s mother, he was granted parental rights. That ruling, while meant to safeguard the rights of men at the time, now stands in the way of one man seeking custody of his biological child.

The Michigan appeals court that has most recently ruled on the man’s case concedes that the law does not support his paternity claims even though it acknowledges that the plaintiff is doing the right thing by attempting to be with his child. According to the court, because the child’s mother was married at the time she and the plaintiff had a baby together two years ago, the plaintiff’ s paternity does not determine parental rights. The law dictates that the woman’s husband be recognized as the child’s legal parent.


From child support to the costs associated with raising a child, parents may encounter a number of challenges, especially if they are going through a divorce or recently separated from the father or mother of their child. However, establishing paternity can be vital and it is important to understand the benefits of paternity establishment for parents and children in Salt Lake City, and across Utah.

The State of Utah offers an online portal known as Paternity Matters for people who have questions related to paternity. According to the site, establishing paternity provides a variety of advantages. First of all, children cannot access any of their biological father’s benefits (Social Security, inheritance, veteran’s benefits, etc.) unless paternity has been established. Also, paternity establishment can help children receive the financial support that they require as well as medical insurance they need.

Establishing paternity also provides children with a better understanding of their family health history and provides biological fathers with the ability to pursue certain legal rights such as child custody, visitation and the ability to make decisions concerning their child. Furthermore, if a child’s father was born in another country, the father’s country of origin may provide a child with rights once paternity has been established. Whether you are a father who wishes to gain access to legal rights regarding your child or a mother who has realized the benefits associated with paternity establishment, handling the process of establishing paternity properly is paramount.


If you are a parent who owes child support, it is important to understand both your rights and your responsibilities. Covering child support can be difficult, but it is vital to provide children with support they depend on and avoid becoming delinquent. If you live in Salt Lake City, or elsewhere in Utah, you may be able to get credit for making other types of payments rather than cash child support payments.

According to the Office of Recovery Services, there are a number of different types of payments noncustodial parents may be able to get credit for, which are known as in-kind support. If you had an in-kind arrangement with your child’s custodial parent that was filed in court, or if you were asked to make a home payment as an alternative to making a cash child support payment, the ORS may give you credit.

From in-kind support to cash child support, it is vital to ensure that you understand and abide by your obligations. After all, the consequences of owing back child support can be severe, from facing arrest and steep fines to spending time in prison. However, if you are experiencing hardships or have become unable to continue making child support payments, you should evaluate your choices right away. For example, you may be able to lessen the burden by modifying your child support order.

Free Consultation with Paternity Lawyer

If you have a question about child custody question or if you need help with paternity, please call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506
Ascent Law LLC

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About the Author

People who want a lot of Bull go to a Butcher. People who want results navigating a complex legal field go to a Lawyer that they can trust. That’s where I come in. I am Michael Anderson, an Attorney in the Salt Lake area focusing on the needs of the Average Joe wanting a better life for him and his family. I’m the Lawyer you can trust. I grew up in Utah and love it here. I am a Father to three, a Husband to one, and an Entrepreneur. I understand the feelings of joy each of those roles bring, and I understand the feeling of disappointment, fear, and regret when things go wrong. I attended the University of Utah where I received a B.A. degree in 2010 and a J.D. in 2014. I have focused my practice in Wills, Trusts, Real Estate, and Business Law. I love the thrill of helping clients secure their future, leaving a real legacy to their children. Unfortunately when problems arise with families. I also practice Family Law, with a focus on keeping relationships between the soon to be Ex’s civil for the benefit of their children and allowing both to walk away quickly with their heads held high. Before you worry too much about losing everything that you have worked for, before you permit yourself to be bullied by your soon to be ex, before you shed one more tear in silence, call me. I’m the Lawyer you can trust.