In parentage cases, also called “paternity cases,” the court makes orders that say who the child’s legal parents are.
If parents are married when a child is born, there is usually no question about parentage. The law assumes that the husband is the father and the wife is the mother, so paternity is automatically established in most cases.
But for unmarried parents, parentage of their children needs to be established legally. If there is not an agreement on paternity of a child, the Court can order a DNA test to determine the father. After paternity is established, custody, visitation and child support can then be set forth via a Final Custody Judgment.