Serving the Washington, Multnomah, Clackamas Counties


Do You Have Rights as a Father? You Need to Know! Speak to an Experienced Paternity Attorney in West Linn, OR Now

Serving Clients in Oregon City, Milwaukie, Lake Oswego, West Linn, Portland, Wilsonville, and Surrounding AreasĀ 

When a child is born out of wedlock, he has only one legal parent. The child does not have a legal father unless and until the mother and a man sign a paternity affidavit and file it with Oregon’s Vital Statistics office, or the Court declares a man to be the biological father and makes him the legal father via an Order of Paternity.

ORS 109.094 states, “Upon the paternity of a child being established in the proceedings, the father shall have the same rights as a father who is or was married to the mother of the child.” This means that a paternity father has the same obligation to pay or right to receive child support as a divorced father. He can also pursue custody and visitation orders through the court.

In a custody dispute, most paternity mothers have an edge over the father due to the fact that usually the father has never lived with the child. The court is very reluctant to uproot the child unless there are serious problems in the mother’s household. The court grants identical visitation orders now called “Parenting Time Orders” to paternity fathers as it does to non-custodial divorced parents, except in the situation where the child and father are strangers. In that case, there is often a get-acquainted period of several months before the child stays overnight with his father.