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Paternity Establishment

The establishment of paternity is any legal action taken by a parent to add a father to the child's birth certificate.  In some cases you may also be given an opportunity to change a child's name during the paternity process. The Ohio Department of Health does not charge a fee to process a legal change to a child's birth certificate.

There are several ways to establish paternity for a child, including a voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity process. Each action is governed by its own law and regulations. For more information about establishment of paternity for unwed mothers, review the Acknowledgment of Paternity Affidavit guidelines.

The only way to remove a father or change a father is through a local Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA) or juvenile court.  For more information, review the Determination of Paternity guidelines.

Married mothers should seek legal counsel or contact a local CSEA or juvenile court for guidance.


Reviewed: 4/4/2017