for paternity suit in California.

Why Choose D'Cotledge Mediation for Paternity Suit in California

D’Cotledge helps parents and guardians take paternity action in California. These mediations are complicated and intricate due to the impact of these actions on the child’s life. For a child, knowing the identity of their father makes an enormous difference in the course of their life.

Establishing paternity can directly impact the child’s emotional and socio-economic health, making paternity action proceedings of the utmost importance.

Keep in mind that during mediation for paternity suits, the well-being and best interest of the child will be taken into consideration beyond anything else. Therefore, if you consider paternity action in California, you need to understand what you should expect.

Paternity actions have several legal requirements that require assistance. Due to the legalities and the sensitive nature of paternity suits, it’s essential to have an expert paternity lawyer that can help you through the process.

D’Cotledge Mediation has an experienced team that knows the ins and outs of California paternity law. We will guide you through filing paternity action and help you understand the various aspects of the legalities.

paternity action

Paternity Action in California

A paternity action is a legal action to determine who a child’s official father is. During paternity suits, a child’s case is researched, evidence is presented, and an investigation into the various aspects surrounding the child. As this takes place, certain conditions must be met for a specific man to gain legal recognition as the child’s father.

Paternity suits tend to be complex and emotional, with a variety of factors that contribute to the difficulties. Navigating the emotional waters of legally establishing paternity in California can feel impossible on your own. With a skilled paternity lawyer, all parties involved will have a better, more professional experience.

Filing Paternity Action in California

There is only a small group of people who can file a suit under California paternity law. This includes the alleged father, the child’s mother, the child itself, or the state.

Most paternity suits are filed when a child is born out of wedlock. Take a look at some of the most common times when a paternity suit is filed:

  • The mother wants to receive child support from the child’s father.
  • Father wants legal recognition of their paternity in order to gain child custody rights.
  • The child wants to have their father legally recognized as their parent.
  • Parents want the child to gain an inheritance.

With DNA evidence in a paternity suit, it is much easier to prove who a child’s father is.

However, paternity actions are still applicable to provide formality in the paternity process. As these mediations involve real details and emotions, not just the results of a DNA paternity test, they can be difficult for those who consider pursuing them. Still, there are many benefits that make the procedure a good idea in many paternity cases.

benefits of paternity


Children who grow up without knowledge of their father face greater struggles and setbacks in life than those who don’t. When a child has both of their parents legally recognized, they experience positivity in their emotional, financial, developmental, and social lives.

In most paternity law cases, it will always be in the best interest of the child to legally determine who their father is. There are a number of great benefits that the child experiences when both of their parents are recognized, including:

  • Doubled financial support.
  • Optimal insurance coverage.
  • Knowledge of family medical history.
  • Inheritance possibilities.
  • Names of both parents on the birth certificate.
  • Eligibility for social security, veteran’s benefits.
  • Citizenship in other countries And more.

Children who only have one parent legally established will struggle with things that other children do not. Having both parents recognized is essential, whether the parents are happy with the paternity or not.

There are important factors of a child’s life that are only prevalent when recognition of both parents occurs. Through paternity action with D’Cotledge Mediation, you can determine the legal paternity of a child and set them on a brighter path.

paternity benefits


There are a number of ways to establish paternity in California. Paternity is most commonly determined when a child is conceived and born during a marriage. When this occurs, both parents obtain parental rights and responsibilities at birth. Typically, a paternity action isn’t needed in these cases.

Children who are not born into a marriage may need paternity action taken on their behalf. Here are some of the most common out of wedlock scenarios where a paternity action may be filed:


During most situations where a baby is born to unmarried parents, the father will sign a voluntary declaration of paternity at the hospital. The parents will be notified of what signing the declaration means, including rights they are revoking and parental obligations. After notification, both parents sign the declaration.

According to California paternity law, the declaration of paternity can be revoked under certain scenarios for up until 60 days after birth.


DNA testing is genetic testing that can determine paternity with almost perfect accuracy. This occurs by testing a saliva swab from the potential father and matching it with the child.

These tests are so reliable that they have changed the paternity suit process immensely. Before DNA paternity tests, proving the paternity of the father was based on personal accounts of the situation, heightened emotions, and circumstantial evidence. DNA paternity tests in California have provided an accurate foundation that enables the local courts or the parents themselves to determine paternity.


If the father of the child is not biological but has acted in the role of the father by housing him, taking care of him financially, and treating the child as his own, they can seek to legally establish paternity in California. In these instances, the father can be granted legal paternity by the court or through a trial. D’Cotledge Mediation can help fathers in cases of parentage by estoppel.

fathers rights in California


If you are going to file a paternity action, contact D’Cotledge Mediation for professional help. Before you file, make sure you know what it means to be legally recognized as a parent under California paternity law. There are a number of rights and responsibilities that you will be in charge of when you legally become a parent, including:

  • Court-ordered custody and visitation rights.
  • Child support orders, in the case that the mother retains full custody. Keep in mind that you will have to pay ordered child support, even if you don’t have the ability to pay it.
  • Decision-making for the child. Both parents will make large decisions about the child.
  • Shared expenses for education, childcare, healthcare, and more if the court orders shared child custody.

When you become the legal parent of your child, you take on the responsibilities of that child. If you do not provide for the child as required, there are a number of legal consequences to face. Whether the other parent has full custody or you share child custody, you will be financially, physically, and emotionally responsible for your child.


Contact D’Cotledge Mediation before you file a paternity suit. Our experienced paternity law team can help you with the detailed process of establishing paternity in California. We will ensure that you get the representation and advice you need.

It’s our goal to make sure every child has the benefit of knowing their father. We are skilled in family law and achieved countless positive results in past paternity cases. At D’Cotledge Mediation, we always seek to put the well-being of the children first. We keep them in mind as we work with our clients and help them through the process of a paternity action.