How to Add a Father to a Birth Certificate in Michigan
When a child’s biological father is not listed on a birth certificate and the family wants to add this information, a family attorney can help. The office of Vital Records is responsible for records of birth in the state of Michigan.
When seeking a change to a birth certificate, it is important to understand the requirements of the Vital Records office and to follow them precisely.
In the following article, we will explore how to add a father onto a Michigan birth certificate.
Who Can Change a Birth Certificate?
Those individuals who can easily change birth records in Michigan include:
- The parent cited on the birth certificate
- Any legal guardian named on the document
- The child (if they are over the age of 18)
If none of these people are available, the record can be changed by the child’s heirs. This is only possible if the child and their parents are no longer living.
The person who initially filled out the birth certificate will also be able to change the document. This power also extends to legal representatives of any of the parties mentioned above.
If the child’s biological father is not listed on the birth record, he can take specific steps to change the certificate.
There are several ways to establish legal paternity for a child. Doing so legitimizes the parent-child relationship and includes many legal benefits.
The most common way that paternity is established is marriage. If the child’s mother is married at the time of birth, her spouse is considered to be the baby’s parent. There are exceptions if a court has ordered otherwise.
Unmarried parents are required to complete certain actions to establish the paternity of the child’s father.
Affidavit of Parentage
In Michigan, one option is for both biological parents to sign an Affidavit of Parentage (AOP). This document is signed under oath and filed with the state.
A more difficult option is a paternity lawsuit. If the father sues for paternity, a judge will hear the case and make a legal ruling. Biological fathers may seek legal paternity any time before the child is 18 years old.
How to Add a Father to a Birth Record
Adding a father to a child’s birth certificate requires different actions depending on the circumstances.
No Father Listed
If no father is listed on the birth record, the child’s father must provide certain kinds of documentation to have the certificate changed. The father can provide both:
- A completed application to add a father and
- A court order naming them as the father
Alternatively, they may provide one of the following:
- A court-ordered establishment of paternity
- A signed Affidavit of Parentage
- A court-ordered determination of heirs
In some instances, the court will order a DNA test to establish the biological parentage of the child.
Different Father Listed
If the birth certificate lists a different person as the father, the situation is more complicated. The other person’s name must be removed before a different parent’s name can be added. This adjustment typically requires parents to seek legal assistance.
If you need to change a birth certificate in Michigan, speak with an accomplished family attorney, like the team at Gucciardo Family Law, to explore your options.
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